I open the door to the dark room and smell his warm little boy smell. He begins stirring as I walk across the room, so I silently watch him sit up on his knees and rub the sleep from his eyes.
The first thing he sees are my eyes looking at him as he asks what we’re doing today, then he crawls into my lap while I sit on the bed. Once wrapped around me, he falls limp like a beautiful doll. I gently rub his back how he has loved since he was a newborn baby, five years ago. I marvel at every vertebrae lying between the sinewy muscles of his back. I feel the breath being the only motion of his body, though I know he is growing even as we sit there for but a minute. I push my nose into his spiky bed-head hair and relish in the tickle, the familiar scent of my first-born child. My heart swells with love, with the luck that I got to carry him inside of me, and then got to keep him afterwards. He is my gift.
Eventually nature calls, and he crawls off of me. I head to the other room.
I open the door and whisper her name. Once I turn off the fan, I can hear from her breath that she’s awake. I poke my finger through the slats of her crib, and soon feel the gentle pressure of a tiny finger pressing against the tip of mine. I pull away, and hear the first sound she’ll make today: a giggle. Of course I do it a couple more times, because the giggle is feeding me, nourishing me for the day ahead.
Finally I need to see her, and look down into her crib. Laying on her back with a sweet sleepy smile and twinkling eyes is the most beautiful girl I have ever seen. She somehow grew even more beautiful overnight, a sentiment I can’t help but believe each morning. She clambers up into my arms the moment I reach for her, and she slips into my hug warm and soft. Her head tucks under my chin, the perfect fit that love can have. I close my eyes and say, “Thank You” before my day begins.