Bedtime.

Most of the time, Jake goes to bed at night without too much of a fight. Tonight, I had to go to the grocery store late and so he was in bed when I got home. Apparently, that didn't mean he was asleep. As soon as he heard me, he begged for me to come in his room.

"Mommy, lay down!" he demands.

And so I oblige, because something about even a quick jaunt to the grocery story by myself somehow renews my sense of affection and erases away the day's annoyances. So I lay down.

He can't stop talking. He tells me all about the 40 minutes of his life that I just missed.

"Watch Turtles Daddy," he says."
"You watched Ninja Turtles with Daddy?" I question.
"Yes. 'Cary Turtles?" he questions.
"No, they aren't scary."
"Oh, good Turtles. Read Daddy scrip-scrips?"
"You read scriptures with Daddy?"
"Yes, Gake scrip-scrips."
"That's good, I'm glad you read scriptures. But now it's time to stop talking and go to sleep."
"OK," he says. And then he starts singing, "This Ha-ween, this Ha-ween," from the YouTube video TJ let him watch just before Halloween.
"No, Jake, it's time to sleep. How about I sing to you?"
"OK!"

And so I sing to him. And then I leave his room, to his protest. I make it about five minutes before he calls for me again. This time, saying, "Gake hungry. Eat Cheerios?" But I know his game, because next he asks to "Play choo-choo?" and so I try to leave again, but he just cries at his door. Finally, I give in and go back to his room, pick up that little boy that is getting to be so big, and cradle him in my arms like a baby. I hold him close and smell his hair, clean from his bath. He doesn't fight it. In fact, he seems to relish it just as much as I do. And when my grip starts to slacken, he wraps his arms around me and adjusts his head against my chest, and I hold onto this moment for just a little longer before I put him in his bed, lay down by him, and sing "Peace, Be Still" by Nate Noble along with my phone which is playing the song on repeat because it's his magic sleeping pill.

Eventually, I hear his breathing slow and deepen, and I sneak out of his room.

I've had very little patience in general lately, especially with that sweet boy. I think tonight, we both needed a few moments to reconnect. Sometimes, it's OK if bedtime isn't as quick as usual.

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