by Matt Barber
It was the summer of 2011. We were visiting friends in North Carolina one weekend for a lovely wedding on the beach. Our strong-willed, opinionated and hyper-inquisitive children, a boy and two girls, were, at the time, 10, 7 and 6 respectively. My gorgeous, though Chicago-tough and Sicilian-sassy, wife and I were at lunch with the kids at a little seaside café the following day. A late morning ocean breeze puffed through the eatery’s open bay windows, filling our nostrils with that salty pong of damp sand and faint sea life, forecasting a beautiful day ahead.
We were discussing the wedding ceremony from the previous day. The blushing bride, a delightful young woman, happened to be about eight months pregnant and, to my knowledge, had not been the beneficiary of a second immaculate conception.
As the tsunami bursts forth from still waters without warning, our youngest daughter’s face abruptly took on an air of contemplative curiosity. She looked to me and asked, “Dad, how can she (the bride) already have a baby in her tummy if they’re not married yet?”
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