After a long day of errands and "play, Momma, play" and some fussing and some reading, The Boy sat next to me on the couch while the Daddyman fixed dinner and I talked to my sister on the phone. He wasn't quite ready to stop rough-housing and he buried his face in my belly and I could feel his teeth, not quite biting down but not quite not. I tapped my fingers on his cheek and said sternly, "You do NOT bite," and he cried and cried so my sister said, "Oh you're a mean momma." The Boy quieted as we talked about his equally ornery cousins. His body curled up against mine as he sucked on his blanky and nursed his grievances, but he threw his arm up to touch my face as if to say I was forgiven. He was asleep by the time the conversation ended and Daddyman had dinner on the table.
We tried to wake him, not wanting our always-hungry Boy to need to eat! eat! eat! in the middle of the night, but he was too far gone. He refused the chicken, refused vegetables, refused even milk as tears streaked his face. So, we put him to bed. Only that wasn't right either. The Boy was stuck between up! and night-night, dragged unwillingly from sleep but not ready to go back.
We normally do not get him out of bed once he's in for the night, but I felt guilty for having disturbed him. I dragged him up over the crib bars and settled into the rocking chair. The Boy is so big now, his head fits under my chin and his legs scrunch up on either side of my hips and his weight, settled wrong, makes my breath shallow. I rubbed my cheek against his head, smelling him and his spit-soaked blanky, as one of his hands rubbed my arm. I whispered to The Boy about how it was time to sleep but we'd play tomorrow and how much I love him and how much fun we're going to have with his cousins and grammy and aunt Lexi this weekend. I told him how much I'm going to miss holding him someday when he's bigger than I am.
And as I hugged The Boy, Baby2 rolled in my belly. I wonder about the logistics of holding both a wee newborn and my giant toddler. They'll each outgrow my lap someday. But right now, I can hold them both at once.