Our Babies Are Here

Danith has come home late from work, and as he sets down his briefcase he asks if I’ve seen the snow.  I am sitting in the living room where the mustard yellow cotton curtains shield the sliding glass door and the night beyond it.  “It’s beautiful,” he says, pulling back the fabric.  Snow is not new to us.  This is our 15th winter of it.  Quietness fills the room and his face as he proceeds upstairs.

A few minutes later, I follow him, and in the hallway he pulls me in for a kiss and then leads me to our babies’ room, where the espresso-stained crib and glider remain.  Where the white area rug lies parallel to the legs of the crib.  Nothing in this room has been moved or removed.  I reach for the switch when he tells me to keep the lights off.  “I feel them,” he says.  “They’re speaking to us.”  He urges me to join him at the window, where we peek through the blinds.  The snow continues to fall, each flake the size of my thumbnail and fluffy and a sign.  We fumble with the cord that raises the blinds.  “Look,” he says as we stand side by side at our children’s nursery window.  He is pointing to our backyard, the area enclosed by a pine tree, a silver maple, and some peach, apple, and cherry trees.  All except for the pine’s are limbs of brown and gray.  “I imagine them playing out there.”

Later, when we are in bed, I affirm to Danith that he misses our babies today.  My voice is low and soft, trying to comfort him.  The veil of quietness hasn’t lifted from his face.  “I miss them every day,” he says.