I hear her voice coming from upstairs in the sweetest of noise.
“Mama! Come get me!”
It’s not the warrior yell of a toddler on the rampage desperate for attention or a chocolate granola bar. It’s the call of a baby who has been woken by a bad dream and just wants her mama.
I pick her up, grab her favorite blanket of the moment (Tiana), and wrap her up tightly to protect her from the cold that’s blowing in outside. I hear her sigh as she knows I’m not banishing her back to bed alone. We both need this.
She snuggles in close, tucking both arms in under her safety shield and falls asleep. There are no arguments, no pleas that she’s actually done sleeping. At 3:30 in the morning.
Before long her tiny sighs have turned to sleep and I lay her down. Not in a crib. Not in my bed. In her own bed. Her twin bed with the princess sheets she picked out. She rolls over her beautiful little bed and onto the pillow made lovingly for her with her name on it.
Suddenly my baby isn’t so little. But she is. Proof is in this silly face of excitement in her new bed.
In those moments I’m ok with still being up at 4:30 am (the moment I’m writing this). I take in the white noise from Ava’s room and the sound of the cold front blowing in outside. I feel the heat on my cheeks as the heater cycles on after days with an air conditioner blowing onto us to cool the day.
I know I won’t get back to sleep before I have to be up soon, and that’s ok. You take the time where you can get it, and obviously this is when I was given the quiet in the house that I sometimes crave to just sit and write. The inspiration I need to put words to life.
I’ll kiss my babies good night just one last time and try to sleep. I’ll be thankful beyond words for all the love in my house–even more than I could imagine deserving. But they’re mine. All of them. And I say thank you.