I like the way Gus sleeps with his knees tucked in underneath him and his butt poking up in the air. I used to sleep like that when I was kid. There are pictures.
He wakes up to the sound of my footsteps and is in the middle of a deep stretch when I arrive at his bedside. I stroke the soft hair on his forehead. He gathers up his froggy and blanket and crawls into my lap. His body is still warm from sleep.
“Did you have a big sleep or a little sleep?” Something I almost always ask him.
“Big sleep!” Which is always his response.
I remind him that it snowed. We haven’t had a real snowfall in Chicago since Christmas. He perks up. “I want to see!”
I lift him to the big window, and tug open the blinds. We observe the snow covered trees and their branches, the snow lined roofs of houses and apartment buildings across the street.
The city street below is bustling with the early morning commuters.
“The cars have snow on the tops of them!” Gus exclaims.
Looking out his bedroom window is a favorite activity. Gus particularly likes spotting the passing buses and trucks. Because there are several bus routes on our busy avenue, there is never a shortage of buses.
Gus has learned to identify most of them. “That’s the 92 Foster Avenue bus” or “That’s the 50 Damen bus” or “Here comes the 146” and even “That bus is not in service”.
I’m tickled and a little amazed by this peculiar skill.
I find myself wishing we could spend the day together. I imagine looking out the window some more, then going out to play in the freshly fallen snow. I would teach him how to make a snow angel.
But there is school today, and it’s time for both of us to get ready. I tell him to say good bye to Foster Avenue and to go see Daddy in the kitchen for breakfast. He protests and cries. “I’m not ready, Mommy! That’s not okay for me, Mommy!”
I feel a familiar ache in my heart, the one I feel whenever I have to leave him. Then I pull him from the window and carry him to the kitchen.