it's one of my favorite parts of the day
those quiet, dark moments right before we tuck Cole in and close his door for the night.
after the flurry of getting pajamas on, going potty, brushing and flossing, I relish the calm and peaceful routine of reading Cole a story, singing him a song (lately "Rudolph" has been the most requested), and tucking his blankets around him just right.
but last night takes first place of my very favorite nights.
as Chris was tucking Cole in, sharing their last smiles and giggles of the night, he kissed Cole and told him "I love you."
and Cole answered, "LUB YOU!", complete with the sign.
it was the first time he's ever said the words without prompting.
a completely spontaneous act of love.
I know how much Cole loves us...it's in his everyday kisses and hugs, his eagerness to spend time with us, his evident desire to make us proud.
but nothing compares to hearing those words straight from him, in his sweet little boy voice, not pronouncing the words quite right...even if he might not know quite what the words mean, at least by definition.
it was magical.
it was the feeling in the room; the tangible feeling of so much love.
if I wanted payment for the hours of sleepless nights, the sacrifices of time and energy, the bodily fluids I am now eminently familiar with, the worry and tears...it was all repaid in those two little words at that exact moment.
it was a moment I'm sure Cole won't remember, but his daddy and I will never forget.