Her son looked up at her with tears in his eyes. “But Mama… No…”
“To bed,” she said, as she pointed to the dungeon otherwise known as his bedroom.
“No buts,” she said, pointing more firmly.
His little feet padded the carpet as he filed down the long hall. He looked back and his shoulders sank.
Her heart plummeted. Why does he have to give her that look?
She hated giving in.
She sighed as she trudged down the hall. Putting her hand softly on his back, she said, “Let’s go.”
His shoulders relaxed under her soft touch.
He ran to his bed as if, only moments before, he hadn’t been terrified at the prospect of spending another night in the dungeon.
“Book?” he asked, in his special 2-year-old squeaky voice—a voice that could melt even an ogre’s heart.
She sighed. “Only one.”
He clapped his hands over his mouth and giggled with youthful exuberance.
Maybe giving in, this one time, wasn’t such a bad idea.
Lying down next to him, he placed his head on her shoulder and pushed his thumb into his mouth.
He sighed as his tiny, cherubic fingers twisted stray pieces of her hair into tiny knots, but she didn’t care.
He was in her arms, safely comforted by the feel of her touch—the touch that only she could bring.
The book was short, but as she looked down to his face she saw that his eyes had closed.
It didn’t stop her, and she read the last line—“I will love you forever and always.”
He yawned and she smiled as she leaned over and kissed his soft baby hair.
She wanted to stay in the moment forever, holding him in her arms, but she knew it was fleeting. A growing boy needed his rest.
Pulling herself from his slightly pudgy arms she left his bed and tried to sneak to the door unnoticed.
“Mama?” he called out.
The sweet sound made her heart leap—her baby had called her name.
He looked up at her, as she stood in the doorway, and he smiled. “I love you Mama,” he squeaked.
Maybe she would give in again.