Aug 19, 2006


In response to the challenge put forth by Her Bad Mother


When I first learned of your touch you were a rumbling in my belly. You could’ve been indigestion.

When I birthed you your father helped me breathe as I forgot how from the pain and when you came I yelled out and I don’t remember anything else.

When you came home with me you nursed and I cried. I was sure my breast would crackle into a million painful pieces. I cursed when you cried with hunger.

When you slept you needed to hear my heart. I piled pillows around us and wore you in a sling, I never put you down and I didn’t sleep for months.


Your breath smells like cream cheese frosting. I drink it in with deep long breaths finally understanding why there is a flower called baby’s breath.

Your skin is flawless, each pore spaced so perfectly like a fine lattice, each little blond hair pointing the same direction, each crease and wrinkle brand new. I marvel at its softness and hold it against mine whenever I can.

Your laugh sounds like a twinkle, it’s unfettered and true and in it I find all the hope in the universe. Daily I ask you for that laughter with the tips of my fingers against your ribs.

Your little belly rises and falls with sleep against me at night. I know you are safe and it’s the best sleep I will ever have.


How long you will let me get the dirt off your face with my spit?

How long you will need to bury your little hands into my armpits for comfort?

How long will you let me cut your nails, clean your toe jams, brush your hair, rub lotion onto your back?

How long you will allow me wrap my arms around you when you’re hurt?
When you’re 9 and you fall off your bike?
When you’re 25 and your heart is broken?
When you’re 44 and your patience is thin?
When you’re 68 and you’re sick?

When will you be too old to lay your head in my lap?

Tell me when so I may grasp the last cuddle with my whole memory.


cameo said...

one day they stop hugging back
and it sucks
having to ask your babies for a hug

when you are everyting to them
that time is fleeting
treat every cuddle as the last

because one day they move past it
which, honestly, is what we want them to do

(loved this post)

Jenny said...

(thank you)

Jo said...

Oh my, that was so very beautiful, poetic, sweet and tender. Wow.

Jenny said...

You should read some of the other responses. check out the comments


and here

Her Bad Mother said...

This was beautiful. 'Cream cheese frosting' - yeeeeesssss.


And - 'grasping the last cuddle with my whole memory.' Made me choke back a tear. Or two.

Anonymous said...

one of my favorite posts of yours (along with the mommy jeans posts). been lurking for a long time...thank you.

cara said...

Was writing on my blog about a friend who had a miscarriage so reading this nearly brought tears to my eyes. You are passes so quickly. We need to cuddle them as much as we can!

KTJ said...

cripes Jen; when is the last time I am going to hear "Lapa-Lapa" when he wants to sit on my lap :(?
In the words of my 2 year old...I'm sad.

Surfing Free said...

Oh crap! I can't read that sort of thing at work .. *sniff*

The love we feel for our children is soooo beautiful its heartbreaking.

I often spend some time late in the night when I wake up crying about how precious and beautiful my girls are. It's an unbelievable emotion and you put it so beautifully.

Mommy off the Record said...

Read this on HBM's site and just had to come leave a comment.

Your post brought tears to my eyes. It was so beautiful. I hope our children will always come home to cuddle if they need to.

lara said...

linked here from HBM. this was really touching and beautiful - thanks for putting it out there.

kittenpie said...

Oh, so lovely, so poignant, so wistful.
Made even my eyes swell a tiny bit at the end there, and I'm pretty impervious to thijngs I consider sappy. This is not sappy, it's true and very nicely said.