The laundry sat unfolded in two baskets in the corner of the family room. Olivia slept in one corner of the couch, her legs across my lap.
Alyssa leaned against me, her right hand clasping my left. She smiled up at me and in that moment I was so glad I’d made the decision to sit next to her moments before when she asked, “Sit with me?”
I’d finally gotten Olivia to sleep and was standing all of three feet away from the couch, starting to fold the laundry that had mocked me all day long. But that one question made me stop, put the underwear I’d started to fold down and settle back in between my girls.
Alyssa won’t always want me to sit next to her as she falls sleep. She might not even want this next week but for now she does want that and I want to give it to her. It’s during these quiet moments when Olivia is already asleep and Alyssa’s in that sleepy stage right before falling herself that she needs me, wants me near. It’s in those moments that she’s still little. Gone is the snarky, eye-rolling tweenager and my sweet, loving girl is back and I want to cherish those moments, relish them, hold them tightly to my chest and make them last forever.
I did get the laundry folded and put away, but it happened after Alyssa had fallen sleep, after we’d spent some quiet Mom/Lyss time, just the two of us, warm under her blanket, whispering and giggling and just being happy to be together.
I will always sit with her. Anytime she asks I’ll put down the laundry and sit.