In the too-early-to-actually-even-get-up morning I woke from my mommy-slumber to the sounds of a dog snore, a partner snore, and kids’ breathing in and out dreams of cartoons  over the baby monitor. But I had woken from a dream that had nothing to do with mommy-life. There was no anxiety or stress there; just this airy illusion of warmth, running, and mischief. And there was still time, so I snuggled down into the duvet and went back.

I was 20-something again, that freedom feel of college days, running about with my Crush on the beach, thinking deep thoughts on life, our purpose, and generally thrilled that at that moment; we had nothing truly responsible to do but think and simply be. We found a beach hut filled with other like-aimless-prophets and smoked what was left of a joint with them in this beach bungalow of no-responsibility, and somewhere there at that moment in the dream; I paused. Sure that there was something that was supposed to be nagging at me, sure that there was something I was supposed to take care of. And I looked down and smiled. Nope. My dream and I was for a moment … free to do whatever felt yummy, not mommy. I ran back to my Crush and snuggled next to him, really, quite pleased as I felt a few muscles slowly, begin to unwind. For now, the possibilities were endless, and the sweetness was simple.

When my my eyes finally opened later to my four-year-old peering at me over the mattress edge, I knew that mommy time was back. He greeted me with a kiss, a huge smile, and even remembered to whisper quietly, “Mommy, I want to watch the train cartoon!” He was so excited and eager, I was happy to help him find his joy too. Some days, you get to have both worlds.