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Her tiny hand is barely the width of my face so it takes both of her palms to cover my eyes.  She leans in completely unaware of how loud she is or how close she is to my ear and she asks where’s Daddy? to no one in particular as it’s just the two of us in the room, unless the numerous stuffed animals count and if we’re being completely honest… to Madison they do.  This is a game of peek-a-boo meets hide-and-seek where she holds her hands over my eyes until she doesn’t anymore then suddenly I’m found.

It’s her turn.

I can cover her eyes with one hand, but I choose to block them instead of letting the weight of my palm rest on her face.  Watching her squint her eyes closed with an ever so slightly crack in her lids as she peeks to see if I'm looking at her is what makes this game fun for me.  She opens her eyes and screams because I’m still here and I assure her I always will be even though this moment doesn’t call for such deep thoughts, I seize the opportunity in hopes she subconsciously soaks it in.

Then it’s my turn again.

She instructs me to close my eyes and I do as I’m told.  I can feel something sticky on the underside of her left ring finger, the one with the freckle where her knuckle bends; I mentally retrace her snacks and meals of the day assuming it’s the strawberry jelly she had earlier when she ran off before scrubbing her hands clean. I can smell the remnants of peanut butter from that same sandwich mixed with the faded scent of her baby lotion from a previous bath.  I can hear the giggle she's holding in her cheeks like a chipmunk with a tree nut, trying with every bit of self control to save it for later only to give in almost immediately.  I can see her smiling with my eyes closed.  We could play this game forever, the back and forth of hiding and finding and sharing our smiles will never get old.

It's her turn again.

2 comments

  1. This is precious. Sticky jelly--such a small, easy to overlook description--says so much about being a parent. :)

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    Replies
    1. Yes! Exactly... which is why I find myself continuing this little space of mine to document these little moments in hopes I never forget them. I'm glad to see you here; thanks for stopping by, Bethany.

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