Throughout the day, I am blessed with Loaf’s outpouring of affection. She rushes to me announcing she has “something special, just for you, Mom,” then gives me a giant bear hug.
“Don’t lose it,” she orders, and showing my hand clenched around an imaginary ball that I tuck against my heart, I promise not to.
Peanut is more reserved and contemplative. She snuggles only on her own terms. When she decides she needs it, usually at the end of the day when she’s most tired, she’ll curl against me like a giant kitten – feet tucked under her, head pressed against my chest, hands gently splayed across each shoulder. She brushes my hair from my face and whispers her affections in my ear.
“Just for you, Mommy,” she says. “Don’t tell anyone else.”
She resettles and I look down to see a satisfied Mona Lisa smile on her flawless face and know she is comforted.
In the course of my busy day, they are just moments on the clock. Mere things that happen in between checking e-mail and folding laundry.
In reality, they are so much more. They are what matters most. They are treasures in a day that could otherwise border on monotony. They pass in a heartbeat, but will sustain for a lifetime – a child-to-mother life support system.
Someday, when they have left our home and the hugs and kisses only come a few times a year, when the “I love you’s” are mostly heard on the phone, I will think back on them. I’ll remember a secret sweet nothing whispered in my ear as I lift that imaginary ball once again to my heart.
“Still here,” I will say.