I had just fallen into a deep sleep. The kind that happens in a matter of seconds as the result of minimal sleep and the knowledge that there is no time to drift and settle. That’s when I felt the slightest of stings on the inside of my forearm. It was enough to wake me into a groggy version of awake that I tend to function in from 9pm to 7am. That’s when I heard the buzz and knew it was a mosquito. Alarmed, I tucked Kale closer to me and scanned the vicinity for the culprit. I called for Kris who came in, turned the lights on, sat on the bed and waited until the mosquito showed itself before squishing it with precision.
This is when I had one of those moments that dawn on me with such force that I can’t even pretend for one second to ignore it - the voice that tells me “you are a parent. you are YOUR parents.”
I have always had a major hate on for mosquito’s. This is likely because mosquito’s seem to pick me out of a crowd and feast on me regardless of the amount of bug spray I’ve covered myself in. They leave little bites that swell into abnormally large bumps that itch for days, disappear, and then return to itch with a vengence.
When I was little I would often wake to the buzz of a mosquito hovering nearby and I would holler for my mom. She’d come running and I’d tell her what was wrong and she’d turn the lights on, sit on bed and wait until the mosquito showed itself before squishing it with precision.
Sometimes when I was up in the middle of the night with a migraine and hanging over the toilet, my mom would wake up, check on me and then go downstairs to make a cup of tea, or crawl back into bed, knowing there wasn’t much she could do for me. But with a mosquito - she’d be there, she’d wait with me and she’d protect me.
That’s what parents do.