It was my granddaughter’s fourth birthday party. I, old lady
with cane, was sitting in the shade on the side, then made my way
cautiously to watch the children hit the piñata with a plastic bat.
(In my support group for survivors of sexual abuse, one man told
of being hung and whacked just like that; he had black circles
under his eyes from never sleeping.)
The first few hits yielded no shower of candy and toys. The kids
tried again, whacking harder and harder, even the littlest,
while the adults yelled raucous encouragement.
One child, curly honey hair, Grace, approached, hit it softly,
almost a tap, as if afraid of hurting it. After more blows,
and a big whack delivered by a parent, the piñata at last
surrendered its goodies to eager little hands. I went to return
to my seat, caught my foot on a stone and went down. I was not
injured, just shocked, but people clustered around me. I opened
my eyes and looked up into the eyes of Grace regarding me, her brow
furrowed with deep concern. I was lifted to my feet, taken to a chair.
Later, as Grace’s father left with her in tow, I went to tell him how
touched I was by her empathy. He thanked me and said, proudly, “Yeah,
she’s a sensitive soul.” I wanted to say I worried for her but just then
I felt the tears forming behind my sunglasses so I walked away.
Share this post with your friends.