And so, as the final note of the final song is still reverbing through Barclays Center, Rodriguez and his daughters hurry backstage, and stand at the dressing room door, and take a deep breath, and knock. Out comes Katy, wearing a billowy white bathrobe, and Rodriguez introduces himself, and thanks her for doing this, and then turns to look at his two daughters and sees them-shaking. They’re violently shivering, unable to make words. Oh god, he thinks, they’re going to pass out. He’s never seen them like this, he’s never seen them awed by anyone, or anything, and yet it all looks familiar, somehow, because of course he’s seen other children do this, thousands of boys and girls at ballparks across the nation, whenever he and the Yankees arrive at the hotel or take the field.
Haltingly, he tells Katy that Natasha is 9, she’ll be 10 in November, and Katy turns her electric blue gaze on Natasha and says hello there, and Natasha summons her voice and asks meekly if she could maybe please have a hug? Of course, Katy says, and she wraps her arms around Natasha, and Natasha holds on, won’t let go, her little eyes shut tight, pulling in and radiating a kind of love that can’t quite be quantified, or named.