We sat beside the table of a young family. There were 6 boys and two adults who were clearly their biological parents. At first glance I thought, “Not sextuplets, or we’d have read about them.” I looked closer. The 3 littlest ones at one end of the table appeared to be about 4 years old. They were identical. Next to one of them was Mom. On the other side were two in glasses, maybe 5 or 6 years old. At the other end of the table next to Dad was a boy of about 7.

Trying not to be intrusive, I watched the young family as they ordered, colored pictures, and finally ate their dinners. The boys were quiet, well-behaved, gentle and respectful with one another and with Mom and Dad. It was delightful to see them interact in this day when not all children can be taken out in public and expected to behave.

As they were getting ready to leave, we got Mom’s attention to compliment the boys on their demeanor and behavior. Then we asked, “One, two, and three?” She nodded. The boys looked so much alike, and they were so like their parents. She said that they didn’t do this often, but she was happy to hear that they hadn’t disturbed us.

It gives me hope to be part of a moment like that one. A future peopled with families who are loving and happy can only be a positive thing. When all around us seem bewildered, frightened, and discouraged, a glimpse of what can be puts things in perspective for me.