I’m watching you play guitar while I’m writing and for some reason I’m acutely aware of how fragile and short life is. I’m looking down at my chest full and spilling out of this little black strappy dress. My feet dirty from walking over the grass and mud and rocks all day.
Working in the backyard with you, the kids running through sprinklers squealing. The blistering sun on our necks and shoulders. Stealing salty kisses. I drink in your scent. The cologne I love, your sweat mixed with sunscreen.
You look at me and talk. About music. Your first band. How you need an effects pedal for this bend and how everyone can play Greenday songs. I ask you to sing. And you say no. Your dirty ball cap and your tanned forearms with the muscles playing under your skin as you pick the strings. How much I want you.
This morning when the girls came in and you all tip toed out and I pretended to sleep, I was happy. So peaceful. Squinting in the morning sun and listening to the birds greeting the gorgeous day. The smell of coffee and waffles and bacon. Giggling kids hushing each other in the hallway.
You water the plants and tell me to rotate my flowers. The day is filled with goodness and sweltering air and the smell of barbecue. Our hands sore from digging in the dirt. Sticky hugs from the kids and ice cream at Pop’s. You come up behind me and press yourself against me kissing my neck. I hold my breath and slowly exhale pulling your arms closer around me.
When everyone finally burst through the door this morning with hot coffee and waffles and whipped cream and the sweetest strawberries, I cry. And I laugh because instead of Happy Mother’s day the little one says Happy Birthday. And my heart is so full. My life so good. My love so deep.
I love the family we have together and there is a little piece of my heart that wishes we could have done this all together from the beginning. But, you are here now and how we found each other I don’t know. It seems so unlikely and sometimes I must shake my head because you exist. And then I nod my head yes because you exist and somehow our paths have crossed.
You remind me that I am many things, that I am worth time and effort. You have a depth that can swallow me whole. Your mind’s brilliance at times intimidates me and seeing our kids piled on top of you pierces me to the core.
Standing in the kitchen sauteing shallots and garlic, sharing a beer with me and joking around. You laugh your throaty reckless laugh. You with your perfect teeth and light eyes. With your big arms and veiny hands. You sing along to the music. Baby, listen to this. Are you listening? You’re missing the best part! But I’m looking at you and feeling the melody and smelling the roasting garlic and touching the fine hair on your arms and I know I’m not missing the best part.