I'll remember this, I think, like a marble in a jar, and have it to take out and hold when he is grown and surly and bristles at my touch. I will have this perfect autumn morning, sitting on a park bench, watching him battle monsters with a stick. When the beasts are vanquished he crunches through dried leaves, pin-balling from one slide to the next, then pushes imaginary friends on playground swings until they are all in motion. Swinging ghost children that I will recall when my own babies are in far away places. He talks to a cast of characters, not the least bit bothered by the absence of other children.
I will remember his brown shorts and the light blue and gray jacket he wears because there is a chill in the September morning air. He is Christopher Robin, this park his Hundred Acre Wood, and I can sit, watching, a little removed, because he is a big boy now and doesn't need a shadow to keep him from plummeting from the high places.
I will remember the sounds of the squirrels and the wind in the trees. The surprising volume of the falling leaves hitting the ground, the specific thud of acorns. I will remember the golden quality of the light, the type of light that makes me feel like I am living in a movie flashback, all colors softened.
I will remember this contentment and feeling happy in this moment. I will remember this peace.
I will remember this, I think, but even as I think it I know it isn't true. It will float away like so many other memories of their childhoods. So I will write it down. I will put a pin in the map of our lives.
We were here.