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Watching my girls sleep is amazing. It brings me to a place of remembrance and place where I am grateful & rejuvenated. Sleep is pretty much the only time when they aren’t going a million miles an hour. There is plenty of loud noise, yelling, giggling, running, crying, screaming with delight, bouncing off the walls, distributing all their stuff on the floor all over the house & drama which defines the norm of our days. Rarely do I anymore get to just sit and watch them sleep. They go to bed after it’s dark then I want to spend my evenings with Matt. Then they usually get up at some ungodly hour where I am just not functioning. Only Pia naps anymore and that is my time to get things done & do school with the older girls. It seems anymore the only times they sleep during the day is if they are sick. Araiya’s sleep patterns are different than her sister’s. While Pia & Tallis are up at the first blush of light across the sky (or when they hear Matt get up, whichever comes first), all wide awake, bouncy and ready for the day, Araiya is much more like me. She can snuggle back down into her pillow, pulling the covers up over her head in attempt to hang on to the last fleeting moments of sleep she can get. Before someone starts bouncing on her head or she hears the preparations of breakfast taking place in the kitchen. So mornings where I get to sneak in on Araiya still curled up in her bed are exceedingly rare. It’s amazing how much and how little has changed with these little girls. It’s amazing how much of who they are, even when unconscious, is exactly the same as when they were babies. I watch each of them sleeping, Tallis who usually falls asleep first; Pia who sucks her phantom thumb, even after the physical sleepiness has crept into her arm, causing it to fall on to her pillow beside her; Araiya who fights going to sleep but savors each minute in the morning as she often grumpily gets up in the morning. In each of them I see them sleeping as babies. I spent a lot of time watching them sleep when they were tiny, wrapped up in a swaddling blanket as I rocked and nursed them to sleep multiple times a day. I miss snuggling my nose into their soft, downy newborn hair, taking in the sweet smell of a sleepy baby drunk on breastmilk-induced unconsciousness. They are still in there. No longer do they fit in the length of my forearm, nor across the width of my lap, nor against my chest with little legs poking out under my elbow. But they try, none the less. While Matt was gone last week Araiya slept in my bed. Progressively over the course of the night she would worm her way against me, curled in a ball under my arm with her feet tucked in against my knees and one hand curled up against her cheek. I sleep the same way. Familiar, reminiscent of her infancy when she slept with me in that exact same position. Yes indeed, my baby is still in there.


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