I flush the toilet, wash my hands and open the door only to stand in the doorway to stare at you. It's only in sleep that you are relaxed and at peace. I walk over to the bed and touch your face gently. My fingers ghost over your forehead, across your eyebrows and down the side of your face. My fingers dance over your cheekbones and across the jaw that is clenched when you're awake. My fingers trace your lips that are normally pulled in a hard, thin line.

I lie down beside you and curl up with my back to you. In sleep you roll over and throw an arm around me to pull me close. You tangle our legs together and nuzzle the back of my neck. I close my eyes and drift off to sleep as I hear you murmur in your sleep.

I wonder if you know how much you give away in your sleep. I wonder if you know that no matter how tense the silence was when we went to bed, as soon as you fall asleep you draw me close. I wonder if you know how you sigh in content when you're able to cushion your head on my shoulder and neck. I wonder if you know how your arms tighten around me before letting me go when I leave your side in the morning. I wonder if you know how our legs tangle together at night or how you often throw a leg over mine to keep me close.

I wonder how you would react if you were to wake before me one morning. What would you do when you realize that you have wrapped yourself around me during the night? What would you do when you feel my arms gently holding you? What would you feel as you untangled yourself from me? What would you say if I clung to you unwilling to let you go in my sleep as you often do in yours?

Every day when you wake, your face stills and you keep your expression neutral as if a mask has fallen into place. Although I keep my gaze off your eyes, I feel you looking at me with eyes that no longer shine but are frozen in contempt. We go through the day barely speaking and never saying how we feel or what we think. By the time I think of going to sleep I am tense, frustrated and hurt. I wonder why I stay and make plans to pack in the morning. Every night that we lay back to back beside each other, the tears come and I silently cry as you easily drop into sleep.

After you fall asleep, you turn over and reach for me. As you settle your head on my shoulder and nuzzle my neck the tears dry up. I reach up to tangle my hand in your hair and you say my name with longing and desire pulling closer to me. I listen to your breathing as I hold you in my arms. You throw a leg around mine and once again tangle our feet together. My eyes close as you say those quiet words. As sleep drifts in I remember why I stay.