Comfort Food

When I was young, I liked to lie in my mom’s lap, with my head rested on her chest, and listen to her talk. I liked how her voice reverberated through her chest. I liked the warmth and feeling her heart beat under my face. I liked being the only person experiencing her voice and her touch in that way at that moment. These are intensely pleasurable memories. Comfort food for the soul.

Last night, I stepped up to my six foot tall son as he put his PS4 controller away after another epic round of Fortnite. When I reached out for a hug, he hugged back and didn’t quickly let go.

I wrapped my arms around his waist and nestled my head against his chest. He continued talking to his dad about the game. I marveled at how his deep voice reverberated through his chest. I soaked in the warmth. I felt his heart beat near my face. I could have stood there forever. I cherished being the only person he calls mom. The only person who gets this particular hug.

I don’t see my mom as often as I’d like and I never rest in her lap with my head on her chest anymore. But I get a good taste of that old comfort every time we hug. And now I can get a similar sensation with my son. Comfort food for the soul.


All but Daryl were enjoying some cuddles this morning. As Jane joined us, I asked if she had slept well. She replied that she had not and proceeded to tell us about the nightmare she had had just before waking. This caused Hal to “remember” his nightmares and he jumped to his knees to tell us about them.

In his best spooky voice and with eyes as wide as saucers, he began. “I had this nightmare about… a zombie! And he ate my braaaaaaaaaaains! Ooooooooooooh!” He loomed over me with his arms in the air.

“And then I had another nightmare about a big zombie. He ate my toe and then I farted on his face and he DIED!

“And then I had another nightmare about a BIGGER zombie that ate my finger and then farted on me and then I farted on him and he DIED!”

“Well now I know how to handle zombies,” Jane commented. “I just need to have Hal fart on them.”

My husband and I were smiling and laughing silently, while Jane was laughing loudly. Hal picked up he had a receptive audience and continued with glee, bouncing on the bed and flailing about as he demonstrated how each zombie died (the death throes were massive).

“And then I dreamed about this big HUGER zombie that was bigger than the whole… EARTH!” He leaned in close to my face and whispered dramatically, “It was bigger than this house, but not bigger than the bigger, biggest buildings.” Sitting back up and thrusting his arms in the air, “but it was bigger than the earth! And it ate my baby but then I punched it in the face and farted on it and it died!

“And then there was the evil monster! When it attacked, it was killed by the big… dinosaur! Oooooooh!

“And then I had another nightmare…”

“I think this boy sleeps too much,” whispered my husband in my ear. I smiled and listened to the dozen or so supposed nightmares as the boy frolicked across us on the bed.