I spend the morning at the play dough table with a group of twos. I am amazed at how they’ve grown this year. We are having a conversation as we work. We share the dough, take turns with the tools.

At one point I comment on how nice this new dough feels, compliment those who made it, ask one girl if she helped. She did. Another girl, one for whom language came more slowly, now in full bloom, says she watched. I point out that she was not there, that Alice made the dough on Friday, when she was with Mommy.

She beams, this girl who spent many early afternoons weeping for Mommy, who only recently learned she could accept a babysitter pickup without tears. “But I’m here now!” she beams. Is she ever. As am I.