I laid with a man who would one day be diagnosed with sleep apnea and listened to silences.
His toes wiggled and pushed painfully between the mattress and my back. We were lying then at right angles. I shoved and turned him parallel to me. He twisted back again. And I resigned myself to bed’s edge.
He tossed and turned restlessly with each cough. His soft moans in sleep kept me awake wondering where it hurt or if he was dreaming. Then he was silent. I raised up to look at him and then placed my palm gently on his small back to feel the rise and fall of each breath.
Listening for silences.