January 09, 2012

We are in my parents’ living room and she is pretending to sleep and I can hear the exhaustion creeping into her voice.  I suggest we go back to a bedroom, take a nap, come back out to play in a couple hours.

“I do not want to nap!” she tells me.  But she’s rubbing her eyes and her body is heavy and limp against mine.  She’s resting her head on my shoulder, half-asleep.  “No napping,” she insists.  “This is NOT GOOD!”

I carry her slowly, steadily, across the living room and through the dining room and into the hallway.  “Sing me a song,” she says.  So I do.  And the whole time, her head is on my shoulder and her body is wrapped across the front of mine and she is heavy and tired.

When we reach the bedroom, she whimpers in protest.  “We’re not napping,” I lie to her.  “We’re resting.  And when we are done we will go back out and play with your grandparents, how does that sound?”

She nods.  “Sing me about the sugar plum tree,” she demands.  So I do.  The lyrics pour out of my mouth without me thinking about them.  I sing this song every day.  “Scratch my back please,” she says.  So I do.

And then, in a heartbeat, she’s asleep.

I look at her and kiss her head and she does not stir.  I smell her hair and I breathe her in.  I memorize every inch of her face, the long lashes she inherited from her father and the hint of dimples she inherited from me.  She takes one last deep breath as she falls into a deep sleep.

My family is in the next room and I haven’t seen them much this week.  Down the road, I have seeds to plant.  Dishes to wash.  Laundry to fold.  Critters to feed.  Poems and songs to memorize for our home-school.  E-mails to write.  Packages to send.  Phone calls to make.

Instead, I draw my child’s body against mine.  I pull up the blankets.  I close my eyes.  And pretty soon I’m asleep too.

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  1. By Rin on January 09, 2012

    that is perfect.

  2. By Alex on January 09, 2012

    Beautiful. I’m napping with my baby at the moment. Wouldn’t change it for the world.

  3. By on January 09, 2012

    So good. A reminder that I need to do that more.

  4. By Molly @ Little Stories Everywhere on January 10, 2012

    So amazingly precious.

  5. By Adria on January 10, 2012

    Oh Sarah, this is beautiful.





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