I watch as the water runs in a compilation of rapid rivers from the kitchen faucet.
My wrist reveals what I’d already known from the thousand times I had checked it before: not too hot; not too cold.
The tiny bundle in my other arm peers up at me, forehead wrinkled in the questioning calm that running water never fails to bring. His eyes are a deep granite with slivers of blue cutting through to his pupils. I always feel, looking into them, that eyes as deep as his must know something that I do not, especially now.
He simply stares at me, never doubting or questioning me as I remove his diaper and place him gently in the swirling liquid. The sound of water parting as petite baby flesh is placed within captures me and I watch him as he absorbs his new environment, awaiting the cries of angst I had heard from many a previous sibling.
He is, instead, silent. Complacent. Observant.
Tiny toes, skin still peeling from their adjustment to a much less liquid environment, flex and curl above the water as I run a shampoo-covered hand through dark hair, my other placed beneath him to keep him from sliding on the white porcelain. The clean scent of his baby bath reaches my nostrils as I lather him.
I watch as the bubbles form in the water, surrounding and clinging to his skin. He stretches within my hand and I can’t help but marvel at how someone so tiny can still show the telltale signs of cellulite when flexing his thin limbs.
I smile at him while he looks up at me, bubbles etching patterns around him that he won’t begin to notice for many months. His fingers flex and fan in the space between us as his water begins to cool.
Making sure I have his towel ready, I reach beneath him to pull the drain from the bottom of the sink. His fingers grasp at one another, locked together in their exploratory struggle, as the water drains below.
The moment I begin to lift him from the sink, his silence starts to dissipate. There is no longer trust on his face; no longer calm in his eyes.
Anger reddens him as cooler air hits his wet skin and his mouth forms a perfect oval of disdain.
At first, there is still silence.
And then… his opinion is heard.
Loud and clear.
This post was written in response to a prompt from Write On Edge.
Choose a moment from your personal history and mine it for sensory detail. Describe it to us in rich, evocative details. Let us breathe the air, hear the heartbeat, the songs, feel the fabric and the touch of that moment.
Let’s keep the word count to 500.