no need for reminding, you're still all that matters to me

When Ethan is under the weather, he absolutely must keep one of his hands on me at all times. It was endearing at first, his palms resting slightly against my cheek or his fingers tugging ever so gently at a couple of stray strands of hair. There are times when it can be a tiny bit exasperating, like when I desperately need to go to the bathroom and somehow he knows, no matter how deeply he is sleeping, that I have left the bed. His little hand moves up and down on the pillow, panning the empty space in search of me. When it doesn’t find me, his eyes open and he reaches for me to come back. In the middle of the night, he reaches for me again with a searching palm until his fingers touch my cheek, my hair, my mouth, my nose, my neck. He holds on with all of the sleepy energy he can muster and drifts back to sleep.

I’ve realized that I’ve gotten less done this week than I anticipated. Being stuck in the house and basing our daily plans around Ethan’s breathing treatment schedule, I had assumed the silver lining to be that I could actually get laundry done. Or just maybe I could vacuum and mop our floors. Or – dream big! – I could dust the blinds in our living room. Instead, I watch as the pile of clothing needing to be put away grows into a mountain on our loveseat. The blinds are growing balls of dust big enough to rival the tumbleweeds of cat hair rolling down the hallway. Instead of conquering even the slightest bit of productivity, I’ve been spending my days in a stupor, holding onto a tiny little hand as he sleeps soundly on the pillow next to mine.

Today we went to the beach, a trip we attempted twice before the weather cooperated. There is no decongestant like the salt air and playing in the sand is something Ethan enjoys more than saline spray and nasal aspirators. Ethan laughed at the way his toes felt at the water’s edge when I help him stand right where the waves ended on the shore. He squealed in delight when a couple jogging by waved to him as they passed us. He marveled at the sight of the helicopters and the seagulls hovering in the sky. He dug his toes and fists into the sand and smiled as he wondered at the tiny flecks of sand on his flesh.

And through it all, a sandy little hand remained on me in some way; on my leg, my arm, my ankle, making sure I was still there and letting it be known that he needs me. As much as I may miss going to the bathroom uninterrupted or possessing the ability to eat lunch without fueling The Ultimate Infant Meltdown, and as much as I need him to get himself better and beat this lung thing once and for all, I will miss the days when just my touch is enough to calm and comfort him. Inevitably there will be a day when he doesn’t need to reach out and touch me or feel that I’m there in order for him to grow and take on the world. But I’ll try not to dwell on that now and just enjoy waking up ten thousand times in the night to the feel of tiny fingers running themselves up and down my cheek.

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  1. This made me smile and cry all at the same time. They just grow so fast. I feel like I am holding on to some of the last vestiges of those little touches and cuddles as my kids continue to grow. Knowing I'm done having babies makes it all the more sentimental. Those eyes Ethan has are killer! I hope he gets feeling better soon.


  2. So touching (HA!)...no but seriously (and that third pic of him looking back with those amazing baby blues...what a shot!). Hope little Ethan feels better soon!

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  4. Aw this post melted my heart! You have such a sweet boy. It will be a sad day when they dont need their mommies as much...but for now, its so amazing and I love it! You such a great mom, Ethan is lucky. He so cute in your pics!


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