the moment not captured by a camera

The only sound in the room is the low hum of the humidifier.

The only light, the soft glow from behind an elephant, giraffe, and zebra peeking from behind a pile of books.

Two dark blue eyes stare at me in the quiet.

Behind dark wood slats.

I stare back.  Wordless.

A small foot pokes out from the handmade quilt and slowly rubs up and down a slat.

shhh shhh shhh shhh

Without thinking I reach up and touch a small toe.

Quickly it hides away back under the blanket.

A shuffle.  He is now on his back.

From my angle I can just see lashes blinking.  blinking. blinking. as wide eyes scan the walls.

Does everything look strange in the dim light?

Does the familiar suddenly disturb?

Does the friendly smile of the elephant on the wall now seem sinister?

blink. blink.

I roll to my back to see what he sees.

But even on a soft mattress this is uncomfortable for my pregnant body; the floor is impossible.

I roll back to my side.

A sore shoulder and hip is the better option.

I close my eyes and two and a half years run before my eyes in a blur like a water pouring out of a spout.  Mixing together in a murky puddle.

So much time in this room all swirl together into this moment.

I hear whispering.

My eyes open.  He is still on his back.

asa asa asa asa

It’s muffled by a pipey in the mouth and a lamby pressed against his nose.

What is he saying?  Is he whispering his fears to lamby?

Is he assuring lamby and in turn assuring himself?

Is he retelling his day?  How he played in the nursery at church and then ate a messy red cookie?  How he helped his grandma trim her Christmas tree and then ate his weight in birthday cake?

Is he wishing?  Wishing for his baby brother…a train set for Christmas…sleep?

My eyes grow heavy again.

They close.  But I start awake.

Two dark blue eyes.

blink blink.

Softly, “do you want to rock for a bit, buddy?”

A quiet nod.

We move to the rocker.

A boy, a pipey, a lamby, a hippo, and a blankey on my disappearing lap.

Within seconds his grip goes limp.  His head nods to the side.

And I sigh.

I used words instead of a photo because A) I don’t have any photos on my work computer and B) I do words better.