Xander’s first birthday is tomorrow. There will be cake, and perhaps he’ll receive a sippy cup and a pair of mittens. A small celebration, but a big milestone.
He still sleeps in our bed, though he begins each night in his own bed. Bathed, storied, snuggled, tucked in, and sent to slumberland. By midnight, he joins us, nestled between us, his fingers on my collarbone or perhaps my face, his feet on Eric’s back. We’re all asleep again in minutes.
Tonight, he’s still in his own bed, and I’m wide awake. I hear him sigh and roll over, and I find myself feeling sad that maybe this week’s milestone is more than just a birthday. Perhaps he has decided it is time for him to leave our bed, to weather the long nights alone in his own bed. I’m not ready for such a declaration of independence. I should be celebrating the reclamation of my bed—there is such space when there are only two of us!—but instead I’m awake, listening to the baby’s rhythmic breaths and watching time pass.
He’s awake, sitting up, and fussing. With delight, I scoop him out of his bed and into ours. He tosses and turns, adjusting and readjusting until he finds a spot where he can nestle his head against my shoulder and prop his feet against Eric’s back.
He is asleep again before ever really waking up, and I suddenly find my own eyes growing heavy. A milestone narrowly avoided. A baby for one more day.