For sixty-odd years he'd wondered about his real name, wondered who his parents were and why they had given him away.
“How old were you?” she'd asked.
“Were they kind to you?”
“Maybe six months,” he'd said, “Yes. Mom was an alcoholic. Dad was strong and provided well for me.”
His standard response. But this time, there was an insight.
She drank because no one had allowed her to grieve the stillborn, the miscarried children. When he'd arrived she was still drowning in grief. And no one had thrown her a lifeline.