They aren't the first moments that come to mind when I look back. I seem to remember the dramatic moments most clearly of all - the night the cat died, the time we spun on ice and landed in the ditch, the times you let us stay up late to shop at Midnight Madness.
I don't remember the quiet moments so easily. Hardly at all, in fact. I don't remember ever fitting on your lap (although there are photos that assure me I did). I don't remember lying down with you to read a book or look up at the stars. I don't remember tracing your skin, memorizing your hair and freckles and scars.
Each evening I lie, impatient, with my children and try to tune out thoughts of the things I need to do. It's usually a wrestling match between the mom I want to be and the tantalizing lure of solitude. And I doubt they'll remember the moments, the boring, everyday moments of cuddles, stories, praying. But still we do them, night after day after night - not to be remembered, but to press into their soil that solid, steady base that I hope they aren't even conscious of.
Because while I don't remember any single instance of cozing with you, my whole life is weighted and steadied with your arms. At some point I must have studied your face, your arms, your hands so intently that I memorized your freckles and lines. (There is a mole on my neck now that matches yours - I love it.) The rhythms of your speech, your breath, are calming to me - when I can't sleep, I find myself imagining I'm a kid again, curled in a nest on your floor, matching my breath to yours until I sleep.
Thank you for enduring every long and boring and frustrating day.
Thank you for filling me up with good and glad things.
I love you.