I think a lot about this other woman.
She is often there, in my mind, like a too recent memory of something painful and sharp. Like a void within myself that I can't yet fill or abandon, my thoughts and prayers often turn to her. My heart and soul ache for her in a dull, quiet way. My mind understands there will be pain involved, grief even, depending on her circumstances of which I know nothing.
I try to picture her but find it difficult. Arms around herself, hands resting on her belly. Is she just a child herself? A widow? A wife who simply can't support yet another child? What will she feel when she learns she's pregnant? Will she be filled with joy and hope, praying for the possibility that maybe there's a chance however small, she may not have to part with her precious baby? Will she be terrified, dreading what is to come? Is the child she will carry the product of love or anger or neither? When will she begin to think about me? A nameless woman in another country, another world. She will change my life. I will change hers. Will she hate me?
Her pain matters to me. I want to promise her so much. Mostly, that I will not forget her...and I won't allow her child to forget her. That I love her and cry for her. She will always be a part of me, living in her child that I also love already. That this is so complex. I may leave Sri Lanka with her tiny bundle of hope in my arms. But I pray I can leave a little bit of hope behind me too.