The two little chairs were illuminated by moonlight where they sat under the trees. We’d bought those when Asher was small, knowing we’d have more children. We never bought a third, even after Shaya came along. Perhaps we were too embroiled in our emotions, our unhappiness, our lack of clear direction.

When it is time for their father to come pick them up, my children often run outside and drag those child-sized chairs to the edge of the sidewalk, where they sit and watch for him to pull into the driveway.

Yesterday, Eliana and Shaya took them to the far sidewalk. I sat on the ground between them, cross-legged, as they watched the sprinkler go up and down and up.

Last night, as I walked up the stairs in my quiet empty house, I saw out the front window, those little empty chairs, reflecting the moonlight. My children are with their father for an entire week.

I will exercise every day and have more social plans than downtime at home – but I still miss them. They belong with me.

It is hardest at night, when I crawl between my cool sheets and sink against the pillows, knowing no one will creep into my bed in the middle of the night, seeking to lay alongside my warm skin. Knowing no one will call for me in the night, seeking the reassurance that only I can provide.

But alas. This morning is cool and quiet and my time is my own. I will treasure it rather than lament anything at all. It’s only a week, right?


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