It was dark. It was quiet. Everyone was asleep except for me. As I closed my eyes, about to join my family in slumber, I heard a little voice. Emmy was talking in her sleep, saying something completely cute and yet unintelligible. I thought to myself, “If I were already asleep, I would have missed hearing that little voice.” It was something for me, her mother, to treasure.
I thought about all the other little noises I hear when I am still awake and everyone else is in bed. Sometimes the house creaks. The wind makes our old windows rattle. When I am alone, typing on my laptop, I can hear the flutter of moths at the window screen, drawn in by the light at the window. An occasional car drives by; a freight train rumbles on distant tracks.
I enjoy these nights in a quiet house. It is a time for writing without interruptions. It is a time to finish that book I’ve been reading. Sometimes I think about how I will regret my late night in the morning, when Lily will jump on my bed and start to poke me. But for now, the night is mine. I relish it.
When I am ready for bed, I creep around the house, turning out lights and checking the locks. I gather together paperwork I need to finish in the morning and put it at my place on the kitchen table. Tiptoeing up the stairs, I listen to everyone breathing softly. I check on the girls and cover them up. I listen to my husband. He has to be up early for work, so I am happy when I hear him sleeping rather than tossing restlessly.
I slide under the covers and relax all my muscles. I hear Emmy’s little voice and think, “Ah, what a sweet little blog post that would make.” I write in my head. I could creep back downstairs, bring the laptop to bed and write. But that means I would have to get up, out from under my cozy covers.
Instead, I turn over and snuggle deeper into my pillow. I’ll write that blog post tomorrow night, when everyone is fast asleep again.