I listen, in the dark. Husband sleeping peacefully beside me. No sounds from the kid’s room.
No sounds from outside, like unruly neighbors or squealing tires. Our place is pretty quiet and we generally don’t have anything like that here. Besides, the windows are closed.
Nothing is running like the refrigerator or the air conditioner.
“CRACK.” Well, there’s the sound from the living room. Don’t know what that is, still haven’t figured it out after months of hearing it, every night, around 4 or 5 in the morning. Sounds almost like an angry leprechaun smacking the TV with his little shelaleigh. Just a single sharp crack.
I wait, in the dark. Should I get up? I’m not groggy, but I’ve only had about 45 minutes of sleep. And I don’t feel like getting up.
So I wait.
And then it comes. The boy, the one who has little concept of the meaning of “quietly” during the day, can walk on cat-feet at night. I don’t even know he’s there until I feel the bed dip under his weight.
Then his head is snuggled on my shoulder, under my chin, as I wrap my arms around him like I did when he was a baby.
“I had a bad dream,” he whispered.
“It’s okay now,” I whisper back.
“I know why God made the insects tiny,” he told me.
“Because they’re a lot scarier when they’re huge,” he explained softly, so as not to wake up his dad.
Pearls of wisdom.
“I bet you’re right. That makes perfect sense to me.”
He snuggled in tighter and I kissed his head. My bundle of boy went back to sleep, safe in his mama’s arms.
And I knew what had woken me up.