Skip to main content

On a high stool

This evening while dinner was in the oven and I stood near the stove,
my daughter climbed up on a high stool
and sank into the circle of my arms.

There is something elemental about a child tucked under your chin
the soft cheek against your skin,
the hands tucked under your arms or wrapped around your neck,
the easy breathing pattern you join into.
Even the rowdiest rogue will settle into tranquility,
for but a moment,
when his head rests against your chest.

The primal desire to meld with mother seems to melt away over time.
My boy still holds me close,
but the moments are fewer and fleet of foot.
He still clasps my hand in his,
with fingers almost as long as mine wrapped around my palm,
but he lets go quickly.
The need for security is waning,
though in the dark night he still searches to orient his orbit to my location.
I remember a time when he fit into that magical space beneath my chin.
It wasn't so long ago,
and yet feels like ages have passed into shadow since then.

I wish I could snapshot these moments with my mind,
lock them away for the coming days when birds flutter from the nest.
Days that once seemed afar off are sneaking in close,
stealthy thieves that covet the spaces in my heart
and move my children ever closer to independence.
Push though I may,
they still come circling close to snatch my little ones.

But, there tucked under my chin,
the moment is ours alone - my girl's and mine,
at least til dinner is done.


That Girl said…
If I were a publisher, I'd snap you up.
Harmony said…
wow, that was so beautiful!
Anonymous said…
lovely, just lovely

Popular posts from this blog

Dear Carly,

I assume that one day you will come to me wanting to know who you are, where you came from, where your other family is and why they gave you to us.  I offer you little bits of information already, but certainly not crumbs enough to satisfy the appetite.  Perhaps it won't matter to you.  I am assuming a lot, already, about how adoption will impact your life.

People often wonder why adoptive parents are hurt when their children seek out biological roots.  I have the answer, and it's very simple.  Adoption - at its core - makes us question the legality, authority, voracity, and validity of parenthood.  For most adoptive parents, first you must come to terms with an issue that strikes at the foundations of mortality: fertility.  From birth, most of us are driven to form families.  First we are nestlings, nurtured and weened and eventually taught to fly.  Then we are nest-builders, filling our lives with the stuff necessary to drive life forward.  Knowledge, safety, money, a sturdy …

Fragmented re-introduction

I dreamed a dream once of what this would be like.  Of life.  Of patterns and songs and ticking off boxes to find my way. 

Trouble was, I keep looking at the wrong list.

This year's list:

- Turn 40 (check)
- Move again (check)
- Send the boy on a mission (check)
- Finish admin license
- Get lost (check)
- Get found (check)
- Lost again (check)

Wait, that went off track. 

Adulthood is a lot of getting off track.  And back on.  It's weird.

I thought at 40, I would have it all together.

But, I'm barely keeping it from falling apart. 


So, this is me where I am now.

40, working, waiting.  My boy's on a mission in Boise.  My girl's 12 going on 20.  My husband hates his job most days, and loves it alternatively.  Same for me.  We live in a small town I don't like very much and dream of going somewhere else, but we don't know where that is. 

I want to be a writer, but I don't spend time writing.

I read something the other day that gave me hope: Guy Fieri…

On being away from home and turning sixteen: a letter to my son

Dear Josh,

I missed your sixteenth birthday.  I'm sure you recall - or maybe it wasn't so bad because you spent the whole day with your friend watching movies.  Godzilla and Guardians of the Galaxy, you've said.  It's no surprise to me that Godzilla was your favorite of the two.  That atomic green monster holds a special place in your heart.

It was very difficult for me to be away from you when you crossed this threshold in your life.  I remember turning sixteen, being sixteen, and wondering when I would feel like I was actually sixteen.  When I was sixteen, I went and found my first job, I started driving myself around, and I pretty much felt like I was in the wrong skin.  I'm only now, at 37, beginning to feel in the right skin.  Or at least comfortable with the skin I'm in.  But you - well, you don't seem to have a problem being you.  I can't explain how very happy that makes me feel, how very reassured.  Because it can be really hard not to like you…