Pointed finger, wearer of shoes, hall-runner, door-slammer, hahahahahahaha laugher, tantrum-thrower, always-hungry-carrot-monster, the "balls," the "birds," the "dars" (cars), the on-the-lips-kisses, the too-long hair, the long and lingering and serious gazes, the mischief-twinkling-father's-son stares, the charging-full-speed-into-mama's-arms-and-tipping-us-both-over-from-the-force kind of hugs, the lengthening of legs, the sculpting of shoulders.
Which is to say, time is passing. All week here it has rained and rained, sheets of it so thick that puddles widened into ponds that ducks sat in, soaking. We watched it. Heard it against the windows at night. Heard thunder, too. Felt the winter recede with the rest of the snow into the rivers, which are now over the banks, gobbling up mud and old branches, moving the earth.
Tonight, I kissed my boy sweet dreams, hugged him fiercely in a way that's been new, now he's sturdier, and felt all these clangs in my chest as I did so. Goodnight, goodnight, goodnight, goodnight, the world, your neck, goodnight. And when I set him down, he turned on his stomach and sighed, like the blessed.
And though I've so rarely had the time or energy to write these past (almost) fifteen months, I closed his door to pink and orange light pouring through the northwest windows, and I will tell you that something in this last month has changed for me. Time is passing. Spring is coming. My child is growing. And I am quietly but suddenly quite sure that I am coming back to myself. That there is enough of me to go out to the world and to my family and still come back to myself.
Earlier this evening I was looking out at the grove, the trees still humble shades of brown and gray, and, "Oh!" I said out loud. Because though I've been watching for it for weeks now, waiting for it just as I have since I was too young to know why even grown women would do such things, I didn't see it there right away. It snuck up on me--the promise, the arrival of life returning--the bright green buds shooting out of one small tree, like July stars.
Sweet dreams, friends.