Another slow, slow day. I’m working but my daughter’s school is closed, and I can hear her banging around outside my office door. There are movies to watch, cats to scratch, snakes to build out of Play Dough. At noon my friend comes over to take her for a walk while I keep plugging away. They tromp out in rain boots, cross creeks and climb hills. They return muddy and tired. My daughter runs into the house with wet socks and stands by the heater to change out of her clothes.
It’s a good day. A fat, round day. After I finish work I walk into her room where she has been avoiding her nap. She’s dumped every Clifford book onto her bed. She’s building a castle out of blocks.
Would you like to come help me, Mama?
So we sit on the floor and build a castle. She covers me with a blanket while we work. The house has the quiet hum of a late afternoon, heaters kicking on and off, a rumble you feel in your belly.
Later, we decide that we need to get out of the house. I propose Mexican food, because we can walk to a restaurant. We pile on our heavy coats and bundle our daughter into a stroller. She’s growing so much these days. Her head stretches over the top of the backrest. She sits slouched in her chair like a teenage boy.
We walk, my husband and I talking about all the things we are working to build. Businesses and dreams and the like. Halfway to the restaurant we notice our daughter’s gone quiet. That nap she’d been avoiding had come to make it’s claim.
So we get an unexpected date night, our daughter deep asleep on the red seat of our booth. We split a bowl of chips and salsa. Tacos and rice and salad piled high. Two smiling waiters and a lady saying Gracias, De nada every time we say hello.
It’s a good day. A fat, round day. I am happy, here, in the middle of it. Exactly where I need to be.