She comes to me when she is scared. When she is sad. And we take a minute to connect. She feels less afraid, less lonely.
She comes to me when she is tired. I help her to unwind and relax into sleep.
I go to her when she wakes afraid in the night or because her teeth hurt or she is cold. I help her to keep warm. I help the bad dream become the past. I help her to rest again.
She pats my belly. Sighs. Curls into me. Her toes tickling my knees until they are still again.
She smiles at me in the morning and says, "Hi mommy" with a lilt that lights up my heart. I tell her "Good morning,baby" We snuggle into the day. She takes a moment to get ready. A little mama milk before the hustle and bustle begins.
Sometimes she is wiggly-giggly. Sometimes relaxed. Other times distracted. Or oh so serious.
Sometimes she touches my face. Other times she counts my arm freckles. She says "Gank you, mommy" and goes on her way. My big girl who is still my nursling.
I cherish these days. I know they will not last. The day will come when she requests other things. Replacing these times with a hug, a shrug or a band-aid. There will come a day when a kiss will do. A book. A special treat.
But we are not there yet.
And so I will nurse her until she is ready for those other things. No worries. No timeline. No regret.
For now, I am physically her anchor. And someday when she decides it's time, she will cast off and sail away.
Thankfully, for my heart's sake, that day was not today.