There are dirty diapers on the floor, rolled up and waiting for someone to notice them and move them to the overly stuffed garbage can. Kids books are piled all over the couch along with two half-eaten bananas. There are french fries under the table and paper plates all over the counter. Somehow children’s clothing is scattered across the entire room again, along with small piles of sand and the random rock or two that fell out of their clothing when they stripped it off. A few withered dandelions lay on the rug. My body is still foreign to me, old curves and new ones, stretched muscles and skin with nothing inside to fill it out anymore.
The sun is out. The trees are just starting to open their leaves. There is a slight breeze. I can get off the couch without heaving now, and finish a meal without nausea or heartburn. My hip pain is gone. The kids are fed and playing happily together in the sandbox. The wash machine is running. The radio is playing quietly. Almost all the dishes in the kitchen are clean. The cookie jar is full of homemade cookies (because I’d much rather bake than pick up clutter, and aren’t cookies more important anyways?) and everyone has enough clean clothing for tomorrow.
There is a sleeping one week old baby on my chest. His legs are curled up under him, and he’s completely relaxed against me. I can hear him breathing, feel his little heart beating against mine. I can smell that new born baby smell, and his milk breath. I can kiss his soft fuzzy head whenever I want to.
His tiny hand clutches my shirt. His lip twitches and then he smiles.
I have no where better to be, and no expectation to do better at what I am doing today.
I am free.