Two nights ago, I went to the final demonstration for my husband’s robotics class (more on that to come). My former boss was there, with his two blond little girls in tow. They still remember me from when I worked for him, but are usually too shy to do much more than just greet me with big eyes from behind the ramparts of his legs.

This time, however, the older one’s shyness couldn’t hold out against the lure of a friendly face amidst a swirl of strangers. As soon as she saw me, she launched herself directly onto my lap and snuggled in, safe at last against the crowd. Truth be told, I was feeling a little overwhelmed myself, and the sheer warmth of that solid little body tucked into mine was just as much a comfort to me as it was to her.

As she perched on my lap, watching the goings-on intently, I rested my hand on her round little kid belly and marveled at the wonder of this small person. It was like holding a butterfly in my hand — I was so afraid to scare her away, and yet I wanted to just hang on to her forever. (Not in a scary way, I promise!)

I felt like someone had punched me in the gut. Or, as a friend of mine said upon seeing a cute kid the other day, it made my uterus hurt. In that one instant, that simple, trusting gesture, my biological clock advanced by about half an hour, and my evolutionary clock regressed at least 10,000 years. All I could think of at that moment was, “Baby — GOOD.” In all of the hoopla surrounding my dad, I have done my best to ignore the relentless ticking of my internal clock. So far, I’ve done a damn good job. But there are some times when its song crescendos to a roar, and that single biological imperative is all I can hear.

This was definitely one of those times. In fact, it lasted all the way up to the minute she jumped off my lap and started wrestling with her little sister on the floor. Right about then, I thought, “OK so maybe it can wait a little longer…!”