This morning, I was about ready to head out the door, getting a last-minute cup of coffee in the kitchen. It was about 6:30 a.m.
I hear footsteps shuffling down the hall, and Lucy, bleary-eyed, runny-nosed from a cold she's fighting, bundled up in Mitsy, Blankie and Stitch, comes around the corner. First thing in the morning, Lucy's pixie voice is a bit of a growl, but it's still as high and cute-sounding as ever, which makes it even more adorable.
"What are you doing here?" she asks me. She's never awake when I leave for work. Sometimes Maddie is, and she'll give me a hug and sit on the couch, watching, until I drive away. This may be the first time she's been up to see me.
"Getting ready to go to work."
"You have to work today?"
I knelt on the kitchen floor to give her a hug. She plopped herself onto my knee.
"Daddy, I loooooove you," she said. As she did, she closed her eyes, smiled the contented smile of one who can still take absolutely everything for granted, and pressed her cheek against mine.
I sent her off to fall back to sleep in bed with her mother.
Such happiness as I have is almost unbearable.