I knew I was in trouble the moment I met Marcus. He was 2 1/2 years old and tiny. He looked at me and smiled, only it wasn’t a smile of courtesy at being introduced, it was a smile of great enthusiasm as if he already knew and loved me; like I’d returned. It scared me.
At first, it was because I had a thing for his mother, and by way of implication, that could mean a heavy responsibility was literally staring me in the face. The array of responsibilities already denounced after a failed marriage. I had no desire to ever marry again, let alone have children.
He told Me a Story
So then, Marcus started to tell me a story, using his voice but not with words at that age. I could tell that it was a complex story, full of rich details, all of them happy, some of them wonderful. He smiled the whole time he talked, and he never took his eyes off of me. What a wonderful story to tell – this amazing, energizing, how-cool-is-this story, and he was so happy that I was there to hear it.
I am the only one who ever heard that story, and I recognized that while he spoke it. For that minute, there was me, him, and his story. That was the real reason it scared me, because I recognized- as I had with his mother- we were connecting.
A Year and a Half Later
I walked into the taxi-cab office the day lease payments were due. The office manager, a classic “yeller,” was being his usual hot-headed, demonstrative, and loud self. “Whaddya mean you don’t have your lease?! The money’s OUT THERE! GO GET IT!!”, he shouted at the guy in front of me.
His face was still red when I approached the window with Marcus on my hip. A little worried about Marcus’ reaction to the loud man, I also worried about the man’s reaction to my bringing Marcus to the office with me.
“Just tell me you’ve got your lease, today, Qu- aww, will ya look at that little guy.” Before my eyes, Mr. Loud melted into a smile that would make you think Marcus is his favorite grandson.
As it happens, this boss had an adopted brother who also has Down syndrome, and he loves him. “Yeah, they’re great people, Quinn,” he said to me, and then a profound sentiment from the man previously voted Least Likely to Utter Profound Sentiments: “You know, if there was someone like that in every home, the world would be a better place.”
I still marvel at that one, nearly 20 years later.
He’s right. The whole world would be a better place. Draw some conclusions about what would happen if someone like Marcus were in every home.Someone who didn’t judge, who is honest, who forgave easily, whose “agenda” included laughter and peanut butter & Jelly as top priorities. Imagine if every household had to change their priorities to include caring for a person who gives love freely in exchange for, well, loving them back.
The implications are scary again, in a good way.
20 Years Later
Speaking of scary, Marcus and I still enjoy watching The Simpsons, especially the Halloween episodes.
Marcus’ Graduation 2012
P.S. I still have a thing for his mother, Mrs. Sikora.Back Atcha! To the “Best Dad Ever!” per Marcus.
I think you were all equally blessed to have found each other. Quinn, I couldn’t imagine a more perfect father for Marcus, it really is like you complete each other. This was a beautiful post, thank you for sharing your story!
Great job making me cry Quinn! We are all blessed having Marcus in our lives. His love reminds me of this story I heard on NPR were they were talking about a monk who meditates 20 hours or so a day in order to make his heart “as big as an ocean” so that he could help others by absorbing their pain into his ocean and it would just disapear within its depths. Marcus is a lot like that. You can have a terrible day, month, whatever, then you see him and he instantly pulls you into a hug and it’s gone. In those few quick moments of contact you can only feel love. What a blessing – all of that power without the 20 hours of meditation. Love you all!
His meditation involves tearing catalogs I think.
Ahhh–we loved Queek, too…from the moment we saw how much he loved Marcus. We knew he was ‘the one’ for Mardra then. It was a prerequisite to be madly in love with the son in order to marry the mother.
Yeah. I lucked out didn’t. I?
Marcus is cloaked in a ‘special person’ aura. The man (23) exudes warmth, cheerfulness and emotional healing. I just love the guy!
I am also proud of my son Quinn who allowed Marcus’ love to drag him into a rich bonding.
By the way….wonderful story Quinn.
What an uplifting story! Thanks for sharing.
Thanks for stopping by! 🙂
I love reading about Marcus. It always makes me smile.
Thanks – That’s what we’re hoping for.
I love this post. My husband often says too (probaby ina brash way I would never share on my blog) that every family should have someone like Natty, and yes, in the natural occurance of things we all would.
You clearly have a great man there Mardra xxx
Yeah, I think I’ll keep him.
Thanks for stopping by. 🙂
You are an excellent father Quinn! Married into a wonderful family. God bless you and your wi fe and child.
Thanks Gene! I agree. And we got pretty lucky, too <3!
Dang! Guncle Dan misses all of you.
Come on out anytime!
Those boys made our life complete. Well done!