Sunday, February 17, 2008

Sometimes I write...

It's few and far between these days, but sometimes I find a moment to write something down. This is an early draft of something I wrote a few months ago and just found. Feel free to constructively criticize. But, please, be gentle.
For Ivy
November 15, 2007
It is a quarter to two in the morning and you are awake and crying for the third time. Is it any wonder I need a nap most days? This, my friend would say, is reason 878 not to have kids. My exhaustion says she is right. But, I know she is not. This is reason 10, 694 to have kids.

I walk into your room where you sit dazed from dreaming and crying. You see me in your doorway. “maaamaaa.” You almost hum the words. Not a cry. Not a call. More an exhalation.

Your arms reach out half hugging half pleading for escape. I climb into your bed past the rail that keeps you safe in your cocoon of blankets. I lie down, my back flat against the cool wall, and curl up to you. “sshhh. Sleep, baby. Mama’s here.” Your little body, exhausted, relaxes and your crying slowly dies down. Your head bobs from back to front and side to side. Your eyes close and you lie down in the warmth of your bed.

These moments are the ones I will miss when you grow too big to be my baby. You will sleep the restless sleep of an adolescent and I will sneak into your room pretending to fold clothes but stay to watch you and remember. I will wish for one more night like this.

But tonight, I pat your back until your breathing deepens and I hear the rough breath that tells me you will sleep the rest of the night. You lay there beside me warm and calm and I know that this is the job I was made for. I am your mother, the calmer of midnight tears.

I hold your tiny hand, hot and smooth as a stone. This hand, perfect and innocent and pure, will grow with you until I cannot guard and protect you from the world. This hand, so diminutive and warm in mine, may touch pieces of the earth I have never imagined. This hand may change the entire world. It has surely changed mine.

I slip quietly out of your bed and leave you to breathe the rhythm of your dreams. Smoothing your dark hair over your forehead, I exhale a silent thanks to God for this moment.


kellymac said...

Very touching :)

tal said...

I love, "calmer of midnight tears." That's a great line.