When She Was 3.

We hear her wake up across the hall calling out from our bed, “Mama… mama.” Mom’s busy with Remi so Daddy is going to play the role of Mama for the time being. I walk across the house with a sort of impatience from not being able to get more than 30 minutes of quiet, ever. It’s dark in my room. Let me emphasize that she is not in her own bed. As I get closer to the bed I can tell that she is in a half sleep state. She lays the wrong direction on the comforter so I pick her up and prop her back onto a pillow and climb in next to her. Any previous feelings of not wanting to get up and comfort my little girl wash away. I’m exactly where I want to be.

Quickly these thoughts of happiness come to me as I listen to her breathing. I prop my arm up above her head to get a little closer but as I do it grabs her hair and immediately wakes her up. “Daddy! ow. Stop it.” as she swings an elbow my way and arches her neck to stop my arm from pulling her hair. “Sorry baby” I sort of whisper and cringe at the same time. But I give her a hug and go to kiss the spot where I pulled her hair, as I bend down she buckles her head to get more comfortable and makes a direct hit- her skull into my lower lip- which also seems to tweak my jaw out of place.

Its a mess. Even the little sentimental moments I’m trying to savor get tainted.

My jaw feels better though now. Olive has settled down. I relax next to her with my hand on her hand and all is right. My mind is able to wonder for a minute while i listen to her breathe. “This is perfect,” I think to myself. Thoughts start drifting to what it will be like when she is 8, 12, 16, 28, 35. Then to me possibly sick in bed one day laying there half asleep. I picture myself old and Olive a middle aged woman, coming in and sitting next to me.

Just as the thought enters my head “It will be amazing to have her at my side one day when I’m old” … My wife whisper shouts from across the house to me pulling me out of whatever meditation and moment of enjoyment I’m having. She needs assistance in the other room. Remi is stirring and I am tasked to grab a laptop chord.

Moment over.

I roll off my bed quietly.

That is what a night with an 8 month old and a 3 year old is like.

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