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Islands

This morning began before dawn with my poorly boys waking for the day. Tiredness claws at my skull, its bony fingers digging into my temples and blurring my vision. I love early mornings, those beautiful little pockets of time that seem to belong to nobody but you. Islands of calm and silence in an otherwise noisy, chaotic day.

I usually find another of these islands after lunch when the boys are happy and well-fed and together they play in contentment, leaving me free to sip sweet tea and read paperbacks with creased, delicate spines.

As the day begins to dawn I let the dog out into the garden. He comes back, his coat carrying the scent of freshness and cold air and I inhale deeply as I press my fingers into the warm folds of fur around his neck. It’s a scent that never fails to remind me of my childhood; a scent of comfort and security. The hens venture out of their coop and I watch from the window in the first light as they take tentative steps in the new dawn. These are some of the moments I love the best, despite the haze of sleeplessness caressing my senses.

These days are long. They have a rhythm belonging solely to us as a family. Today we fed the hens, and collected the eggs. We cooked. We completed jigsaw after jigsaw. We built train tracks. We piled onto the sofa to read stacks of library books. We considered cleaning, but we didn’t. Then as night began to fall, we climbed into bed, brothers together in bed sleeping soundly. And another day is done.

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