Saturday, June 27, 2009
I spoke to my mother on my 36th birthday and she told me that she had experienced a sea-change in her 36th year. A great shift occurred in her life. She left journalism and teaching and began a long and fruitful career in alternative health medicine which she still enjoys doing. She reflected on how I was now going through my own big shift by going back to university and how ironic or fitting it was that I had chosen journalism without realizing the path I was following, the footsteps of my mother that I was walking in - in my own way.
There was a time when I would have screamed and pulled my own hair out rather than be compared to, mistaken for or in any way resemble my mother. Sounds strong to say, perhaps but we really did not get along for a long time and in many ways we are very different. As I get older however the less I mind being like her. Doing things that she has done and gravitating to places she has been. It is fitting in a "completing a circle" kind of way. The more mature I get the more I see my mother as a woman and a human being before seeing her as my mother. I have come to the conclusion that I am not my mother but I am my mother's daughter. And that is just fine with me.
It makes me curious about the road that Monkey will go on and how it will reflect the roads that the women in her family have walked before her. Will she be unlike any of us ever could have ever dreamed to be or will she follow the river we were all born in to the same ocean we all were drawn to? I expect it will be surprising measures of both. I look forward to finding out.
at 12:02 pm
Thursday, June 18, 2009
Tuesday, June 16, 2009
Almost ten years ago my father gave me a piece of paper with his "recipe for happiness" written on it. It was nothing fancy and there was no pomp in the giving. I found it years later in a box and only then realized just how sweet and loving a gift it was. I framed it and look at it from time to time. It always make me warm to read it. Here is what he wrote (in the original french and then translated).
Salut ma fille chérie,
"petite recette" de BONHEUR
1. Être disponible aux changements
2. Savoir équilibrer instinct et raison
3. Vivre l'instant présent
4. Cultiver un connaissance de soi,
des autres et de l'univers par une vision ouverte et perméable
5. Agir précisément et au bon moment
6. Savoir s'abandonner aux gens et aux evenements: faire confiance
Voila c'est tout ce que tu as besoin de t'inquiéter. Je t'aime
Hello my dear daughter,
"a small recipe " for HAPPINESS
1. Be open to changes
2. Be able to balance instinct and reason
3. Live in the present moment
4. Cultivate knowledge of self,
of others and of the world through
an open and unrestricted perspective
5. Act precisely and at the right moment
6. Be able to give oneself to people and to events: trust
There is all you need concern yourself with. I love you
at 10:24 am
Thursday, June 11, 2009
Bright and ugly in the morning. I didn't get a lot of sleep so am still feeling a little bent. Monkey is in week two of full time daycare. She has stopped hanging on to me like a drowning person but she does still cry as I leave. She waves goodbye with big plump tears ricocheting off her rosy cheeks and says in a tiny quavering voice "Bye Mommy." Makes me want to scoop her up and run away to safety every single time. We are both learning to be big girls and stick it out because after a short while the suffering goes away and there suddenly exists a vast expanse of time for fun and activities which would not happen if we were together.
Week two and she has made friends and looks forward to going but she still refuses to eat the food they give her (which is delicious by the way, wish they were cooking for me, I would eat out of tiny bowls for some of that stuff, yessir) so today we tried an experiment. Don't give her breakfast at home and see if hunger will win out over fussiness. Sounds as cruel as putting a puppy in a cage but sometimes one has to do these kinds of things, I have found. If she doesn't eat at lunch they will call me and I will bring her home and feed her here where she knows the territory and we can pander to her desires. The goal is not to starve her, just to get her to try the food over there. A mouthful would be a small victory.
Motherhood has taught me a few things which I am unapologetic about; tricking your kid into doing something good for them is okay and bribery is a viable parenting technique when used with restraint. Oh and mother's kisses have healing properties - makes me feel like a superhero.
Now that she is in daycare I have the time to get back to some writing before my summer classes begin. As is apparent, I am presently procrastinating about getting started. Plus my mind is still foggy. The tea is not helping. Maybe I should make another cup...
at 6:40 am