By Jing Lejano

Baby S wasn’t feeling well the other day. She woke up with a fever and slept the entire morning. When I visited her in the afternoon, all cuddled up in bed with a blanket, she held my arms and said, “Lula, sit.” And so, despite the fact that I was in the middle of deadlines, I sat with Baby S and eventually cuddled up to her until she fell asleep.

A couple of hours later, just before sunset, Baby S was feeling much better. She was able to eat, watch a little TV, and play with my son K. But when it was time for bed, she didn’t want to leave our house. She insisted on going upstairs with Lula. And so we climbed up the stairs to my room, she with her milk and her “pampin” (her nappies, which is her security blanket of sorts) and me with my book and a glass of water.

We lay on the bed together, she with her arms around a stuffed toy tiger and me with my arms around her. We were just in bed, enjoying each other’s silent company.

I’ve done this very thing, maybe a million times before—with my daughter E, when her playmate pushed her on the balustrade and had to have a head wound stitched; with my son F, when he had another bout with bronchitis; with my son S, when he was generous enough to give his vacation slot to his younger brother; and with my youngest son K, when he had another one of his scary dreams.

When my daughter E just had Baby S, I remember telling her that I don’t want to do anymore of the taking-care-of-baby stuff. I don’t want to change the diapers. I don’t want to play peek-a-boo. And I don’t want to take care of another sick baby.

Well, guess what? I’ve been doing exactly that. I can’t help it! I’m a mom. I’m a Lula. And I just wouldn’t be true to myself if I don’t cuddle up to dear Baby S. Love is love.

Photo by Liv Bruce on Unsplash