I sit by you as the small, Asian woman rips strips of wax and cheesecloth from your upper lip. The Indian part of you is self-conscious about that dark, fuzzy upper lip and on the day before a girl's first middle school dance, there should be no room for self-conscious.
What there is room for is my body beside you, gripping your hand, as I watch you bear the sting of beautiful.
We buy blue snazzy nail polish and I take you to our favorite pizzeria for lunch. We talk about the weather and boys I used to like and decide that after lunch, you need not return to class. I nibble on the little crusts you leave behind. Instead, we'll pick up some favorites at the swanky chocolate shop and return home to do a hot oil hair treatment. Those curls deserve pampering.
When you get home, you ask to go outside to swing a bit, and I watch you from the kitchen as you soar into November. I see your mouth moving, and I know you are singing, so I open the window, wishing for sound. You always deliver, in that husky voice too old for you, and I agree with you and Taylor: I knew that boy was trouble when he walked in. Shame on me.
You tumble in with rosy cheeks and I put warm oil on your effervescent curls. God, curls like that.
Someone texts you and you look down at the screen and smile. Damn, you are beautiful.
I look at you, the evening before your first middle school dance, and wish so much for you and tumble into my own past.
I wish for you.
I wish for that boy who approaches, biting his lip and gazing down at the floor.
I wish for that hopeful flicker in your eyes, the way you can't help but smile at the ground at the sight of him.
I wish for your satin curls to greet his shoulder, shy and soft.
I wish for the music that you feel in your head and in your chest, desperately wanting.
Desperately wanting the moment that is now and the things to come that you don't have a name for.
I'm wishing that. For you.