Oh man. It was one of those days. The kind during which I’m quite certain that my ears were bleeding from Holden talking at me all day. The kind of day that had Ewan a little whiny and teething and chewing on his shirt collar until it was wet, wet, wet. A rainy day. A “will I make it?” day. A “hey Mom, did you know…” every five seconds day.

But then, it was also this. Visiting that new baby girl. Going to the post office to send off photo books and disks. Eating a few bites of the most delicious and decadent flourless chocolate cake from Whole Foods. Sharing that yumminess with a toddler who muttered, “Mmmmm,” with each bite and a preschooler who rewarded me with a goofy grin.

And at 5 o’clock, there was yoga, which was then followed by some hot tub time (after which I, quite literally, almost passed out; but that’s another story). And I began to unravel some of the previous tension of the previous hours and turn into a quieter and more patient momma.

I like her better than that other one. I should name the evil twin something sinister, ‘cause girlfriend’s a freak.

And last night. Last night, Ewan had a hard time staying asleep. So I scooped him up and laid down with him in our bed, and wouldn’t you know it but that stinkpot curled right up into my chest like he could just stay there forever. And I marveled at him. How he spreads out now from my chin to my knees. How he’s getting leaner from toddling around but still has those jelly cheeks and dimpled fingers when he’s sleeping. How his little round belly presses into me with every breath. And then, how he turned to his side and pulled my hand to wrap around that round belly while he settled in deeper to his rhythm of sleep.

Sigh. He knocked that freak-of-an-evil-twin of mine flat on her you-know-what with that. But since she reigned yesterday, I didn’t capture anything good on the camera. I did, however, come across this of Holden at an age not much older than Ewan. Oh, how he needed to hold hands all night long until I thought my wrists would break off but wouldn’t think of letting go. He swept me up with that, a lot like Ewan did last night.

That’s the stuff that keeps it real. Real good. In fact, really, really good. That’s the stuff that gets us through “boring” days and teething woes and “can I just have a minute” attitudes. And it’s the stuff that teaches us every day that we are important and loved and allows us to give it back as good as we get.

I’m gonna go get my freak on with that.