watching a child fall asleep?
I am sitting on the lounge, surrounded by toys and the contents of a chest of drawers, a tower of CD’s precariously perched on the side of the TV cabinet. The laptop in front of me, my legs swung over the side, some crap on the TV, the disco ball spinning and throwing its coloured lights all over the shit and mustard stained walls.
I look over the top of my laptop and see Boo. Laying across his bed his eyes darting and closing, darting and closing, his leg hanging over the side.
He is nearly there. Nearly there.
I stop typing lest the sound disturb him.
He looks over at me.
I start typing again.
His eyes follow the patterns on the ceiling, down the walls. Yellow, blue, green, soft muted red. I remember teaching him these colours. I remember when he first showed me ‘green’, I remember his confusion and meltdown over the word ‘orange’. A food and a colour. Bastards.
His eyes close. 10pm? Really?
He fights it. His eyes fly open, close, open.
He shakes his head. But he can’t fight it. It is engulfing him. His eyes flutter. They roll. He flings his arm above his head. His jaw goes slack. They flutter again.
He sighs. That sigh of contentment. Of exhaustion. Of comfort.
He sits up suddenly. My heart in my mouth.
He rolls over. Leg now on the bed. Body and head wrapped in the blanket. Just like when I swaddled him as a baby.
It is my turn to sigh.
That beautiful, innocent face.
I wait. Wait till the rhythm of his breathing is constant.
I resist. Resist kissing that adorable face until I know he is asleep.
He is asleep. I kiss him and go to bed.
Stealing one more glance of that angelic face as I walk out the door.
updated to add:
He got up an hour later and went to sleep at 4am. Tried to recapture the warm fuzzy feeling from earlier to no avail….