Today I will be busy.
I want to sleep more because I know I have to work today. You come to me at 5am but I had only gone to bed at 12am so I am very tired. You come to me while I lay in my bed, I am wishing that you would go back to sleep. You creep in with us and mutter and poke me in the nose and put your face up close to mine in an effort to wake me up to play with you, to pay attention to you. You cuddle in and I smell the fresh scent of the shampoo that you wash your hair with and feel your warm breath on my cheek.
Today I am busy.
I hurry you along, up and out of bed, so that we can get ready for the day. We brush your teeth and your hair and I press you to fetch your clothes. I hurry you to put on your clothes and try to stop you from pouring too much muesli in your bowl. I hurry you to the car to take you out to your Nonno so I can start my work. I start working, both grateful for work and feeling guilty at enjoying time and space to myself. I wonder what you are doing today. Are you missing me? Are you thinking of me?
Today I was busy.
When we pick you up, you throw your small body from Nonno to mine, pressing yourself onto me and into me and poke my eyes and face. You laugh as I admonished you for wanting to rush straight out the door and into the car so you could squeal in delight as we drive down the freeway and to home. Why rush away? You want to go and you want to go now.
Today I was so busy.
I bustle you inside, quickly make our dinner and press you upstairs after a quick play time in the garden. I want you to have your bath so that you would go to bed early and I can have a work meeting. I hear you crying upstairs for me and am irrationally annoyed (fleetingly) before I hear you being comforted by Daddy. I hear you protesting when you realise I am not coming upstairs to see you to bed because I am busy. But you don’t complain too much, you snuggle into Daddy, happy to have your stories.
Today I was far too busy.
I come to see you after lights are out and you are lying there with your eyes wide open and waiting for me. After I say good night you kiss me and lay in bed quietly. I retreat downstairs, only to hear you call out for me again. I wearily climb the stairs and take you in my arms. You climbed into my lap and insist on me lying down with you. I wonder why you are not sleeping, aren’t you tired my little boy? You cuddle into me with a few toys. As I lie with you I realise how stuffy the room is. Are you hot? “Hot, Mama” is the answer. Do you want the air con on? “No, Mama, no”. After watching you twitch around for a while and looking at me I roll over and wind open the window and watch the soft breeze move over your hair. I watch as your eyes slowly drift shut and I realise as I look at your little face that I am the first thing you saw this morning and the last thing that you saw tonight.
And I realise that today was a day that I missed. I missed seeing you having fun at the dairy park. I missed seeing you as you were lulled into a brief nap after a long walk in the sunshine today. I didn’t see you slide down the slide so fast that you flew off the end. I missed seeing you cut up strawberries on your own, ask your Nonno for juice and cuddle into him for a story after eating one too many chocolate biscuits.
Tomorrow is a day that I will be with you, my darling little boy. Thank you for waiting for me today even though I was not very good at waiting for you. For you I will make all my tomorrows our todays. Tomorrow I will do better.