"According to my tracking stats on who reads the blog and where they come from, most of my hits seem to be for phrases like pubic hair, masturbation or hot mother-in-laws." She looked out the window and tapped her cheek, perplexed. "Why is that, I wonder?"
Colette's body shadows Lisanne's. Her ailments are similar, but less debilitating. Lisanne is the older sister by three minutes. It's as if her body has somehow served as a barrier for her sister's, taking the brunt of the pain.
I wanted another chance to be the mother she always wanted, the mother she wanted to take with her. Her books and teddy bears remained in her (former) room. I still have her art work packed in boxes in my garage; every single piece she ever did. Yes, I probably need counseling for that.
I ate lunch alone for months and remained stoic until one day I came home, went straight to my room and burst into tears. The pain of my loneliness could no longer be contained. My mom came in and sat down on the bed beside me.
When I map a woman's mother-daughter history, I see the beliefs and behaviors she has inherited from her mother. I see how history repeats itself between her and her mother, and between her mother and her grandmother, despite the changes feminism has brought to their lives.
I will be forever grateful that I had those two weeks before the fight began. Those two weeks that seemed to be just us -- cocooned in her hospital room. Two friends, mother and daughter. A bond that had survived distance and disagreement. A bond that had lasted for almost 38 years.
I marched off to the drawer where the office supplies were, grabbed the giant pair of adult scissors and returned to stand directly in front of her. I grabbed a fistful of hair from the crown of my head and chopped it as close to the scalp as I could
She just turned 9 this week, which means I only have nine more years to get her ready to fight for herself in the real world. Nine more years to make sure she knows how to braise a roast, manage her iCloud storage and distinguish between a jerk and Prince Charming. That's not a lot of time.
I will parent her with a confidence I didn't have before. With my first child, I was always reaching and desperate to take hold of what was next. With my last child, I cling to time even as I feel it being yanked away from me.
Now my daughter is in college, just starting her freshman year. She doesn't call home every day, only every other day. But we text a lot... well, roughly constantly. But never during class and I didn't hear from her when she went to the movies the other night.
Having a period isn't a curse. It makes you uniquely qualified to create and sustain life, if you so choose. Speaking of choice, only you can/should make the choice of if/when you would like to become a parent.
Your teacher was going through the developmental checklist with me, and when she got to the part about whether or not you could speak in two-word sentences, she laughed and said, "Cleo speaks in paragraphs, always with a huge smile."
I remember when I realized I had a daughter and not just a baby. It was as if the planet shifted, and I felt close to slipping off. All the hard edges revealed themselves, and it occurred to me I would be teaching a girl how to be in a world I had not yet figured out.
I suppose I thought making a memorable summer for my girls had to include traveling to new and exciting places, but we seem to have made a million little memories just enjoying the simple things summer has to offer right at home.