The room was dark, Sean lay beside me in deep Nyquil slumber. My eyes seemed to respond to the sound,a faint cry, before my ears. No, please no. Don’t open us just yet. My left eye taking things so far that it genuinely wouldn’t open. I delicately slipped my left leg out and braced myself for the kiss of the cold hardwood against my foot. Avery mewed in the other room, a still gentle sound, as I made my way from beneath the quilts on our bed. They floated gently down to the now empty side of the bed, Sean’s form took shape behind small calico and plaid squares. I ran my hand along the length of his legs and whispered I’d be back. I crept to Avery’s room, familiar creeks in the floor letting her know I was coming. As I stepped into her room I whispered her name and she sighed.

You came.

I know this dance. It is my secret. Our secret. We meet like this each night and each morning. And each time we enter the familiar as if for the first time. I reach for her and she for me. And in the moment when we touch, to soothe and be soothed, there is awe. This magic of fitting together and creating one is something we know and trust without thought. Yet each time she melts into my arms and is at my breast before I’ve raised my shirt I feel genuine wonder. How does she know? How am I here holding her no longer wishing for sleep? She treats my body as an extension of her own and as I cradle her in my arms she is nothing less than an extension of my soul.

This morning her dark hair fell straight against her face, eclipsing her eyes and I kissed it away, pressing dark, silky strands back with my lips. She stirred beneath me and her forehead turned, a wispy caress against my lips. I held her closer and she curled her body against me, and for a moment she was inside me again. Wholly mine. I listened to the sounds of the house, the sounds of my life. Avery gently suckling, her fingers tracing circles. The gentle rustle of blankets in Briar’s room, a contented sigh. I thought of Sean’s warm body waiting for me in our bed, the smell of coffee. I lifted my arm to peek through the window to gauge the time. I expected the familiar glow of the street light. I caught the dawn, violet and orange hues coloring the snowy street scape. It was such an unexpected delight that I could swear Briar’s voice came to me with exclamations of so many beautiful colors.

Avery slipped her head back and pursed her lips together, sated. I returned her to the crib, pulling a blanket over her and whispering an I love you. As I walked back to bed I said thank you to the creaks and the rustles of home. I gave thanks for another dawn in this wonderful life that I have.