It's all gone quiet.
After a week, or maybe a month, of what seemed like nonstop activity. Work, and work, gigs and visits, more than 14 inches of snow has fallen, the boy is on his way to his grandparents' house, and it has all stopped.
It's only a lull, but the absence of the boy is the most silent of the gaps. Since I came home from, rushing unsuccessfully to get one last kiss and hug, I have been sitting on one corner of the couch, reading. My pile of library books had grown, and I was nearing the end of two; so I finished them. I riffled through two picture-type books for anything interesting and, finding nothing, put them into the return pile with the novel I marginally liked and the scientific-social analysis I thoroughly enjoyed.
There's nothing to do.
There's everything to do.
We don't have to cross the city to get him at day care; no one is going to drop him off. We are not waiting for anything and trying to cram chores into the cracks of time we have left before the whirlwind of whine and questions and demands descends.
We are just us, with a gap. A gap of quiet where the boy usually lives, filling our time with noise, love, Dragon Movie, and mess.
He's left behind some dirty diapers, stickers, a puzzle, his little chairs, and other miscellaneous errata we will no doubt stumble upon as the days pass by. And parents who will periodically get misty and also revel in a few days of relative freedom.
Maybe we will watch a movie we have never seen before. Maybe we will sleep through the night.
Maybe it will never stop snowing.