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.