It was, for all of us, a peculiar night. Something about this last gasp of spring: a bit restless, a tad eager, a wee hurried to reach the full stretch of summer. I woke and stayed awake in the deep darkness of the small hours, then submerged into underwater slumber through the 6:30 a.m. alarm. Finally up and walking past Georgia’s door, I see a square of paper on the floor. She’s made a sign in red ballpoint to intercept my morning bee-line to the coffeemaker:

Mommy, Please
come in
I’ve beed
wh waiting
for you all

Is this how suddenly it passes? After only 7 years, hardly 7 years, barely 7 years, she is now the vigilant one? The one to wait and watch for the night to lift? For the sleepers to stir? For the ticks to tock toward morning’s reunion? Later, walking the dog, I found a tiny bird’s nest. It was empty; the baby had flown.

Lucky Penny

luckypennyI’m in the middle of my own meltdown, a tantrum, a typhoon in the kitchen. Cabinet doors slam; the walls shake. Georgia looks up. She’s paralyzed; the storm leaves her no safe ground. She fingers Daddy’s loose change on the counter. Then, with only magic at her disposal, she asks.

“Mommy, do you want a lucky penny?”

Why yes, I do, my love, my saving grace. I will put it right here.

Delinquent to the dance

As I start, I am reminded again that I start late. Late to bloom, late to love, late to marriage (the one that counted) late to motherhood, late to life and all its messy lessons. I come around again on things, come around to a different way of looking at them. And so I’ve come around to a different way of looking at this thing here: the blog.

I start by looking at things from the outside. As though it is for someone else, by someone else, about someone else. And then slowly I begin to see that it is not that way at all. You see, I read a lot of blogs. It is me reading, me responding, me concurring, me finding solace in a shared experience, me finding solidarity in a stranger’s familiar story. It is only me; it can only ever be me. Instead of tagging along on the perimeter, poking a poignant comment here and there, wagging my finger fore and aft, it is time that I began in earnest to blog to me. Because I’m the only one here.

We are so slow to commit to ourselves, aren’t we? Looking always for the external acceptance, the validation, the scattered applause rippling to a crescendoed ovation. I’m reminded of a weekend trip to Taos, a girlfriends’ trip over a decade ago. I was single and living in the painful torque between doubt and expectancy that I would love again. My best friend and I stepped into a jewelry shop (every other shop in Taos is a jewelry shop). I studied the rings in the locked cases. “I will marry myself!” I pronounced suddenly, and bought the ring that I wore on my left hand for a scant half-year before the real deal arrived, right on schedule.

“I will blog to myself!” I pronounce.

As writerly self disciplines go, it is as good as any.

So I am late; I am late to the dance. But I am dancing. I am dancing. I am dancing.

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