Today Todd is sitting at the desk next to me. He's mellow and slow-moving and a bit of a tease. He's an oasis in the desert that is Burke. He could sit there every day and I'd be happy.
Two weeks ago, Todd's half-sister looked him up on facebook. She was two months old the last time he saw her. Today she is 32. She has turned down his previous attempts at communication, but it seems she's had a change of heart.
And I can see the excitement in Todd's eyes.
"Does she look like me?" he asks. He's pouring over her photos, and photos of his nephew and niece. He's searching for his face in hers and I kind of know how he feels.
I want to say yes, badly. I want to be shocked at how similar they are, but they're not. I can't say that, of course. Instead I say, "You have the same cheeks. And maybe your nose." Todd is fair, with red hair and blue eyes. Michelle has olive skin with dark hair and brown eyes. It feels strange to regard this man so closely. We've only just met, but he meets my eyes with hope and expectation.
"Yeah," he says. "We have the same nose." And yes, I think they do--in the way that Paul shares his nose with his mom--masculine to feminine.
I'm excited for Todd. I hope, with all my heart, that his sister will allow him to be in her life. He deserves it.