There are PJ’s. There is snack in the play room. There is extra TV time while eating snacks. In the play room. There are piles of bean bags, blankets and pillows. There just might be cookies after lunch.
There is no guilt. There is no we really should do… There is no manic wiping of tiny hands and sweeping of crumbs. There is no not right now, I’m busy.
There is yes. There is a lot of sure, why not? There are hugs, kisses. There is joy, the kind that only comes from watching small brothers make a tent fort, and decree their own fort rules.
There is the ease of home. The comfort of knowing love. The safety of place, our place.
The floors will be clean, the windows free of hand and face prints. The laundry will be for two. The bean bags and blanket forts put away for good. The small boy in a dress-up apron, carrying a pad for taking orders and a tray filled with play food, will be gone. The small boy ordering a slice of plastic pizza, saying “Yummy! Dat’s good!” when he finally tastes his make-believe meal, will be gone.
There will be new joys. New laughter. Surprising, amazing adults who drive and shave and roll their eyes at embarrassing, old Mom.
It won’t be bad, or sad. It will be different.
I lay my cheek against baby-fine hair and breathe in warm sleepiness. I say yes. I watch them play and talk and rest. I listen. I laugh. A lot. I cry a little and hope nobody notices. I choose not to worry about brain-rotting TV and teeth-rotting cookies. We can worry about that tomorrow. Forever. But not