I am rocking him in the same rocker at the same hour on the same sabbath night as I rocked him in my distended five month-pregnant belly four Christmases ago, at my in-laws' house. Everyone else is upstairs and I am wondering when his eyes will shut and I can heave this gangly heft with pretty eyelashes into bed.

He strokes my face with his bare palms. I am annoyed--he is the reason I keep breaking out like a time-of-the-month teenager.

"Tatum, stop touching Mommy's face."

"But," he says, voice groggy, "I love your face. I love yourrr faaace, Mommy."

Whispers, I love your face.

And with that, the record of any lost sleep for the cause of this boy was wiped clean.

The memory of not being invited to dozens of dances by teenage suitors was erased.

I only know this moment where a boy in my arms told me he loved my face.