She decided to take the 1 a.m. bus, which got into the city at around six this morning. It's fall break for her school, and several of her friends were on the same bus, with plans to share a cab home from the terminal once they arrived. I went to bed knowing that when I awoke I would see my girl, I cannot tell you the joy. She let herself into the apartment while we slept. She put down her bags and then dived onto our bed, landing with a thud and an exuberant laugh between her parents. We woke at once, our arms reflexively encircling her, a big glad family bear hug as the dawn slipped through the blinds. I said her name over and over, breathing in her warmth, the solidness of her in my arms after these long months. I thought, I am a mother again. I am a mother.