I walked upon a melting blanket of white spring snow under a crisp blue sky with my babe. Her little head rested upon my heart. Birds sang messages.
The wind howled warnings.
The woman emerged from the house. She tried to look away, but I was walking straight towards her. I smiled. We both said hello. When I leaned in to embrace her, the woman backed off and said she did not want me to kiss her.
"No quiero que me bese."
This same woman welcomes kisses on her cheeks from the men she serves and works for. She giggles around these men as if she were being tickled.
"Si, Señor. Si mi Jefe."
Perhaps the woman is suffering from a cold or some contagious disease and did not wish to expose my child to it. She is most certainly suffering.
I wished her well and sent her blessings.
This is not the first time this woman rejects my kindness and genuine affection. What hurts me the most is that she seems to resent and reject my innocent children.
She may have emotional and psychological issues. She may simply dislike me. She is definitely teaching me.
Anger rose from my belly as I walked away. Why had I smiled? Why had I leaned in to embrace this hostile, unhappy being? When would I learn my lesson?
My baby girl looked up at me and gave me a wise, soulful smile. I kissed her and kissed her.