I remember Saturday mornings. So used to getting up for school at 6, I'd wake up at 8 feeling like I'd slept in. Mike would still be unconscious next to me - often times also snoring. The cat and the dog would have put aside their mutual distain for each other to curl up together on the floor. And it would just be the two of us. Mother - daughter time in the soft light of the morning.
I'd prop myself up onto the seven million pillows I had acquired during my pregnancy and look down at the blossoming roundness of my belly. My little ninja moved all the time. All. The. Time. But, Saturday mornings were the times I could really stop and appreciate it. The times I could push pause on the rest of my life and focus on just one thing. How wonderful it was to have her there, twisting and swirling in her own private jacuzzi.
I'd push my hands around on my belly, searching for my little girl. Pop! She'd push back. "Hey, Mom! Good morning!". She'd flutter around, wiggling, stretching, kicking. At the beginning, it felt like popcorn popping. Like my belly was a hot pot on the stove and tiny kernels shot around inside, exploding into softness. As time went on, her movements developed into different kinds. I could feel her somersault from one side to the other as she tried to get comfortable. It was a strange shifting of heaviness. The solidness on one side of my belly suddenly became soft as she moved over to the other. Sometimes, as she got bigger, she'd slide a knee or an elbow alongside me - and my stomach would ripple on the outside - like a whale surfacing with its fin in the air and then sliding back into the ocean. Other times, she'd punch or kick in a quick, sharp motion. One spot on my stomach would jut out for just a second and then snap right back.
She moved like this often, but these mornings were my time to pay attention to them. I loved these mornings. I remember looking forward to them all week. Just one more day of work and then it's just you and me, kid! For an hour or two until Mike woke up, I would just lay there and smile as she danced around for her Mama. I was so in love with her, it's not even funny. I would imagine what she looked like - how beautiful she would be. I imagined how her chubby legs and outstretched arms would look in a few months when I changed her diapers. I imagined her laugh, her cry, her babbling. I dreamed of the future as my future bounced around inside of me. Those were great mornings.
I could lament right now about how I want those mornings back. I could tell you, truthfully, how there are tears streaming down my cheeks as I write this. But, I do not want to taint those golden days with sadness. Those days are mine and Kenley's. Those days were the days I spent with my baby, and they were the best days. They always will be.