Monday, August 25, 2014

What It Means to be Momma

It was sometime in the middle of the night when I got up to use the bathroom. As I always do, I looked over towards Senia Mae's room and noticed her door wide open. I decided to investigate and peeked in the room, straining my eyes as I struggled with the darkness to see any movement in the shadows. When it was obvious to me that she was still there and sleeping soundly in her bed, I turned around and pulled the door almost shut, leaving about an inch gap open.

Apparently she noticed the rousting in her room because as soon as I got to the bathroom I heard "Momma" coming from her room in that fearful, panic-stricken child's shriek. Everyone knows the only remedy for scariness like that is...Momma. I was not sure if she was crying out in her sleep so I walked back to her room and stooped over her bed for a minute, studying the lump of covers and pillows breathing in a gentle, steady rhythm.

Just when I thought I was going to make my way back to my own bed a small hand, like one of those long, sticky rubber hands that you throw against a wall, came out of the darkness and up to my face. It felt around my cheekbones and eye sockets. It patted softly at my hairline, feeling the springing curls, wild from the nights sleep and then moved over to my lips, pressing over the divot in my upper lip, making sure those lips were the familiar ones.

When she was completely sure it was me in her room and not some stranger lurking over her bed she pursed her lips out big, wanting a kiss. She was so adorable that my cheeks ached from my large grin. I leaned over and gave her a kiss on the lips. She sighed a sigh of utter relief, grabbed her beat up, white bunny and rolled over on her side, completely asleep within seconds. I stood there a moment longer, gazing at her with love, as my heart filled with a joy almost unimaginable. All of a sudden I wondered if this is where the Southern phrase "Well Bless Her Heart" came from. I thought maybe so.
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