Five fingers, ten toes.
  two ears, two tiny face scratches.
There’s that bit of sand under her finger nails.
My voice has finally dwindled a bit. The itsy bitsy spider has gone up and down the water spout many many times tonight by her request. But finally, she’s dosing off.
I sit on the plush orange rug in her bedroom, the room-mostly dark. Just a flicker of light coming through the window. She, my baby girl, sinks heavy into my right arm. As each minute passes my arm gets heavier, her head gets lower. Reminiscent of her days as a wobbly newborn. Her eye lids, they are much heavier now. They take over.
Our apartment is still. It’s been a rough night for River. Her eyes completely closed now, flinch from time to time as a siren passes. And once again as our neighbor’s gate creeps open letting in the night swing of party goers. She’s probably deep in her slumber by now. Dreaming of what toddlers dream of. But I still don’t move. My face lowers to hers. I gently nose kiss her. As I do, I am well aware of her changes in breathing. She slowly starts to breath heavier… then the snoring arrives. That sweet snore, the snore that makes me giggle quietly in the night.
My mind tells me it’s time to lay her down, there’s still a few work things that need to be done before 12 am, but my heart, my heart keeps me there. Staring at her eyes. Taking in the quietness… the beauty.
She’s gotten so big, so fast. This motherhood thing, it’s no joke. In the stillness of the night, when my mind reminds me of all that needs to be done, and all that should’ve been done, my heart reminds me to be still. This moment, this moment won’t last.
So I quiet my mind, and there I go again, taking it all in. I want to remember this exact moment. The one in which she fought me for sleep, and with a song sang in her mother’s voice, in her mother’s arms, on her mother’s lap, she succumbed to her sleep. In that moment, I stare at her again, and the counting continues…
two eyes, one chin, one freshly washed curl across her forehead laying so perfectly, two hands- one that holds onto my arm..
Goodness, I love this girl.

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