To My Baby at Naptime

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I could put you down. 

You’ve closed your eyes. Your breathing has slowed. You’ve drifted off to sleep. So, I could put you down. I could put you down and go fold clothes or grade papers, or go and do any of the other hundred things on my to-do list. I could, probably should, put you down, so you don’t get too used to being held all the time.

I could put you down, but … I’ll never be able to study you like this again. To memorize every line on your face. To stare at you for hours on end.

I could put you down, but … I’m marveling at your perfection, thanking God for blessing me with you.

I could put you down, but … I know you’re my last baby, and my days in this rocker will soon come to an end.

I could put you down, but … you won’t smell this good forever. That new baby smell will wear off, and the scents of lavender and Dreft will disappear.

I could put you down, but … I love listening to you breathe. The snores, little puffs of contentment.

I could put you down, but … you won’t always be this still. Soon, you’ll be crawling, then running, out of my arms and away from me. But for now, I can hold you close.

I could put you down, but … I’m too busy dreaming of who you will become and praying your own dreams come true someday.

I could put you down, but … you’re so warm. So peaceful. You comfort me as much as I comfort you.

I could put you down, but … ultimately, I don’t want to. And I’m okay with that.

I could put you down, but … I think I’ll stay a minute longer because the days may be long, but the years are short, and babies don’t keep.

The days are long but the years are short. So for now, I’ll enjoy these fleeting moments while they last. 

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Originally from Rock Hill, Katherine now lives with her husband of eight years and their two boys in Columbia, where they are anxiously awaiting the arrival of boy number 3 in September. As a high school English teacher for the past 17 years, Katherine encourages her students to be life-long learners, modeling this concept herself by earning degrees in English, mass communications, literacy, and floral design. When she’s not in the classroom, Katherine enjoys cooking new recipes for her family, exercising with friends, reading a wide variety of books, writing her blog Laughs at Funerals, and trying to convince the men in her life to cheer for the Tigers instead of the Gamecocks.

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