I was thinking about Simon yesterday. A memory came back to me after a conversation I had with someone else. It was the way Simon used to sleep. I slipped this detail in to at least two of my novellas. It is a delicious detail and it is something I loved and will always treasure about Simon.
Simon became quite predictable, but it was in a very good way. He always made it very clear when he was ready for sleep. He would turn me over onto my side so that I was facing away from him. Then he would draw me into his body so that my back and my sweet cheeks were pressed firmly against his front. Then he would wrap me up in his arms very tightly.
He did that the very first night we met, and he did it every other night we ever shared together. At first I found it slightly claustrophobic. I felt trapped. Simon fell asleep very quickly and I had to wait until his body relaxed before I could carefully wriggle myself loose so that I could relax.
However, the longer I was with Simon, the more I enjoyed being trapped in his embrace. I used to crave it. In some ways I miss it, even though I found it hard to sleep when he had me held captive.
But I am with Ben. Ben has a different habit all together. He likes to fall asleep facing me. He likes to be looking at me and smiling and kissing before the lamp goes out. It takes Ben longer to get to sleep. He will sometimes be a little restless, turning over and over trying to get comfortable. But he seems to always want to touch part of me. He seems unsettled if we are not touching somewhere.
I sleep much better with Ben. I like freedom to move in my sleep. I like the way he will panic in his sleep and reach out for me. I like the way he will tangle his legs with mine. I like his middle of the night kisses before he falls back to sleep again.
The day Ben told me how much he liked me, we spent some time walking around together holding hands and kissing. It was novel to me because he had been my friend for some years, so I kept on finding it mentally challenging to see myself having sex with him (no problems later that night). What I did find it very easy to imagine was snuggling up with him in bed. I did have a desire to lay next to him and be wrapped in his arms. When it came to it, neither of us were remotely sleepy. We were excited and energised and…there was very little sleep at all that night.
Sometimes – more than sex, more than foreplay, more than anything else in the world – we just want someone to be there, next to us, to feel their arms around us, to hear their deep breathing and sense their chest rising and falling. It is one of the warmest safest places on earth to be resting, fast asleep with someone who we know loves us.