Jude cruises now, carefully keeping one chubby hand on the sofa, chair, or table, he

uses that hand to guide his pudgy feet around the room. He wants to walk so badly.

His mind is ready, but his body is not.

He reaches out with his right hand and curls little fingers around the bar of the kiddie

Lost in the music streaming from the DVD player he bounces almost in time with the

music. He isn’t concerned with rhythm, only movement.

He ignores his sister dancing nearby.

Not only does she bounce, she also claps her hands and works in some amazing

arm movements and a hip wiggle or two.

Gran claps her hands and praises both babies. Delight sparkles in Jude’s brown

eyes as he flashes a wide, toothless smile that lights up his whole face.

He takes a step, forgetting that he cannot walk.

Naturally, he falls, but he has learned to roll sith the fall. He isn’t hurt, yet he shrieks

at the indignity of losing his balance and missing a chance, perhaps his only chance,

to walk for real: one foot in front of the other, holding on to nothing.

He cries for a full minute, worrying Gran who scoops him up in a comforting bear

hug. Disappointment clouds his little face. Contentment quickly chases the hurt and

disappointment away.

He is safe in Gran’s arms. Gran coos softly to him, a smile in her voice. She knows

that all too soon Jude will walk on his own. Soon after that, he will walk into the world, carrying her heart in his heart.

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