I watch each breath like it was a hike up a steep incline. Each time she inhales I imagine heavy feet trudging up some hillside desperately hoping to land further up the hill than when they left mother earth. Each time she exhales I can feel the relief in those troubled lungs - just as I imagine the relief of those spasming calf muscles on a hiker after reaching the next foot hole on the hill.
Each breath adds to the many we have shared over the years together. Breathes playing Frisbee at the beach; breathes inhaling the smell of hickory as the bonfires in the sand burned low and embers warmed our toes as we nestled to the sounds of the crackling fire and waves smothering the shore before us.
We shared breathes as we kissed each other and caressed each other both in moments of comfort and in moments of passions run rapid. Each night we shared our breathes as we laid in bed, face to face whispering stories from the day and telling each other about our dreams, hopes and plans. I loved those shared breathes.
We shared breathes as we screamed at each other in frustration, heartache, stress and argument. Those were moments when it would have been better for me to hold my breathe than to exhale it with miscommunicated misunderstandings, but at the time I couldn't see what a few wasted breathes would mean when all I saw was me winning the argument. Those were prideful breathes we both shared.
Later we would share breathes chasing the two little ones around our tiny little piece of land - a castle for our kids. Breathes blowing out birthday candles and breathes inhaling the sweet scents of Easter dinners; Quickened breathes when a child was 30 minutes late for curfew on a snowy night; Calm relaxed breathes once the family was all home again, safe in the beds we built for them.
So many breathes, I should be grateful for each one, but now as I watch her rest all I can do is plead for more. Soon we will share breathes no more and I will be forced to breathe alone. But for now, I will simply enjoy the breathes we are sharing and have always shared.
A day in three acts - [Normally I love Mondays. Josh takes the kids to school and the van to work, and I get to sleep in (good in these times of nighttime pain), have a slower ...
3 months ago