Maren has had a terrible cough for the past couple of nights. And only at night. I think it's a lying down thing. In any case, for the past couple of nights, after listening to her cough for a couple of hours, I've given in and invited her to climb in bed with me. My giant pile of unshared pillows guarantees her a slight incline and you know, the comfort of mommyness.
Usually, Maren comes and gets in bed with me when she wakes up. She'll usually doze for a while and then start slapping me about turning on the TV. As I wake up generally as a grumpy monster of doom, you can imagine that these are not my happiest moments. I am nice, because it's my kid, but I also take extra time to wallow on the mornings when she isn't there when I wake.
But there's something different about these nights.
When she crawls in bed with her hair still damp from her bath, smelling of shampoo and nuzzles her head into my ribs, it still hurts and I still develop an uncomfortable wet spot on my side. I still can't sleep through her congested little snores. She still tries to push me out of the bed with nothing but her skull and her will.
But for all that, she's so much cuter while doing it. I lay in bed last night and thought, "What else could I possibly need in my life, other than this one trying to merge with my bone structure and the one that's going to wake up mad that Maren got to sleep with me?" And the answer, of course, is nothing.
Brynna woke up with a migraine this morning, and was reluctant to get up, get moving, get dressed, take her medicine or anything else. Finally, I broke down and made a strategic decision. I risked being late and made her crawl under the blanket and lay her head in my lap and just lie still for a few more minutes.
She lay there, breathing deep while I rubbed her back and watched the weather. It wasn't much special, but it was sort of magic at the same time. There was still a healthy dose of morning yelling - seriously, how many times is it necessary for me to say, "Put on some shoes!" but we got out the door and into the car and were the very last car accepted through car line.
It wasn't my idea of a peaceful morning, but as Brynna pulled on her shirt and fumbled with the buttons, she looked at me and said, "I want to cuddle more. We don't cuddle enough."
Indeed, Brynna. We don't. I'm not sure we ever could. But we'll try. We'll cuddle every day. We'll still fight about shoes and backpacks and why-didn't-you-do-that-last-night's. We'll miss a few bedtimes and possibly a few car lines. We'll struggle through.
Cuddling is now on my daily to do list. Because someday, you're going to think that we cuddle too much.