We have a full house now, family on the couch and all, but in the mornings it’s just me and my girl and the quiet dark. I savor every moment – the toothpaste on her nose that makes her look in the mirror and laugh, the way she asks for a cold English muffin, as opposed to hot.
This morning she’s a million questions as she climbs into her car seat: Why is that bug on the light? Why did the spider put his web there? Can we knock it down?
And then – Look, Mommy. Two planes!
No, darling, those are stars.
Her wide, wide eyes. Ohhhhh.
She finally makes it into her seat and I lean forward to buckle her in.
Mommy, can we listen to “Home”?
The song that we’ve been singing on repeat, all week long.
Of course, darling. I adjust the seat belt, snap the buckle into place. We are whisper close, her eyes on my face. I dash a kiss onto her cheek.
Did you know, I continue, that sometimes a place is a home and sometimes home is just being with the people you love?
Like, for example, you’re my home.
She puts a hand on my cheek. You’re my home, too.
At night in the bath she sings to herself again, reminding me of true north. Just know you’re not alone. I’m gonna make this place your home.