I can’t believe you hid from me for all those years what it felt like to love a child. I had no idea. Last night I went upstairs to c.’s old room with all the glow in the dark stars on the ceiling to put a. to sleep. Who knew it could be so soul-fillingly enjoyable to lie on a bed with a tiny body (whose poop and pee and snot and throw up I have cleaned up, whose screaming I have listened to, whose tears have stained me) and stare at the “stars,” sing a few songs, rub the tiny back, and feel her go from alert awakeness to soft sleep. I had no idea. I didn’t know about waking up just before will does, seeing him search for his hand to suck on, knowing he will soon squawk or maybe just open his eyes to find me. I didn’t know that the particular way w.’s hair would stick up and his eyelashes would grow and his gurgles and coos would make me weak with happiness. I didn’t know I would never care about anything more than these children and this husband. How could they have not been there all along? Did these spirits watch me, hope I would choose them and wait for me to be ready to love them? How ready am I to love them now? Nothing makes me feel more vulnerable. All could be lost, all can be gained. I had no idea.