the morning dawned slow. the day before stretches it's muscles as i open my eyes and glance out the window. it's morning. finally. memories flood - conversations, fears, expectations. i sigh and breathed deep - hoping for grace and strength to make it another day. nights haven't been easy with dreams haunting and preventing rest. i rub my eyes and reach for his hand.
he turns toward me and we fumble through morning words. surprises don't come easy when you first greet the day, and so it isn't long before we struggle with conversation. me crying, him still holding on - it doesn't matter the topic, he refuses to let go.
like always, breakfast comes slowly. i catch his glance, knowing the question i need to ask and the fear it will birth. he takes everything in stride, though - and this is no different.
will you? i ask
he nods, accepting the role of protector.
with no place to go, i take to the couch - bent over double and face hiding under a blanket. as if it will protect me from any of the bad things. as if the fabric is enough of a suture between me and the world.
but he holds me with his eyes. it will be okay they say and i sink deeper into the cushions to whisper another prayer. in that moment i wonder if anyone understands the terror i feel and i hope no one ever asks me to describe it - there's nothing to be named, really. just truth.
silence takes over between us and he clears his throat. i look out from behind my legs pulled tight and notice the coast is clear. i find myself breathing deep for the second time and mirroring his smile. i get up, still shaking, and walk over to where he leans over our counter. i wrap my arms around him and rest my head against his chest.
thank you, i whisper. he squeezes my arms and kisses my forehead.
and as things die down and the monsters leave for another day, i know i still have his hand and my heart rests safe in his own.