One of the unexpected but lovely things about having Reindeer in our lives is how other people respond to him.
We expected that family and friends would range from Vaguely interested to Give-Me-Every-Detail-Of-His-Day interested. And that expectation has turned out to be correct.
What we didn’t expect was that strangers would also be interested. That they would stop and smile and engage us in conversation. That they would also want to have Reindeer smile at them, engage with them and generally play a tiny part in their day.
At first I felt a bit overwhelmed by the way strangers would come over and want to say hello, stroke his cheek or ask all sorts of personal questions. Largely this is because I am an introvert and would prefer not to be accosted at all when I’m going about my business.
But I’m trying to embrace this behaviour, or at least, the bits that don’t involve personal questions. Because I’ve realised that people are trying to be nice. That they are genuinely warming to him. Because if saying hello to my baby and telling me that he brings back happy memories of their own children at that age, that this remembrance brings a little more warmth to their day, is it doing him or me any harm? No.
I’ve come to appreciate that we’ve been blessed with Reindeer and sharing some of the happiness that we now have isn’t going to make us worse off, even if I do feel a little awkward and uncomfortable with folk.