January 19, 2005


Time is a big deal to me. Not arriving somewhere on time. No. Those that know me well, know that ummm, that isn't very important to me. I am talking about the spectrum of time. More and more I am aware of how little of it I have left with E. There are times that she infuriates me. She can be persistent and so particular, but the detail in her artwork and her literature is amazingly detailed. She can argue and disagree with 100% of what I say, but she will never and has never lied to me. She can procrastinate with the best, but she knows how to have a good time. She is messy and we all know not to send her to find anything for us, but her penmanship is beautifully neat and she knows exactly where all of her things are. She is very private, but the most loyal friend or relative anyone of us could dare hope for.

I love this messy, laid-back, honest, creative girl who knows how to have fun and how to love. While I can't wait for her to be the adult she so wants to be, I just want to somehow freeze the really good moments; the ones that feed us both for a few days, or even weeks. Then hormones fluctuate; I embarrass her; a friend lets her down; she disrespects me; I disrespect her and we start all over again.

So many people compare life to a roller coaster. I prefer the see-saw, or teeter-totter as some are more familiar. Remember how much fun you would have going up and down, tallking as you rose into the air and then sailed down? Sometimes the person who was landing would really push it into the ground and you would get this little lift at the top. Sometimes a real jerk would jump off and let you fall on your back, all the while thinking himself very funny. Or maybe you were wearing a sundress or shorts and got a splinter in the back of your leg or burned your hands on the handles and so let your fingers alight just enough to hold on. Many days we would load up each end with six kids and watch the bend and secretly hope it would crack. The soothing rythmn of your feet swinging and landing, and pushing off again somehow made going back into a classroom or home more bearable.

"Teach us to count the days.
Teach us to make the days count.
Lead us in better ways
Somehow our souls forgot
Life means so much
Life means so much
Life means so much."
(Chris Rice, Life Means So Much).

I pray that I am not penny-wise and pound foolish in these last years. She is a gift immeasurably valuable and too costly to afford to lose.

Posted by Rae at January 19, 2005 01:27 AM

Rae...I can so relate! My only daughter is a senior in high school now. She is also a complex bundle of so many things, but I adore her and the feeling is mutual. I too want to freeze those precious moments.

Also, I love that Chris Rice song. He's written some great ones!

Posted by: Cindy Swanson at January 19, 2005 05:52 AM

Hey Rae! Just lettin you know that it is possible to have a wonderful mother and grown-up-daughter relationship! Me and my mom have gotten so much closer since I've left the house. And as close as you and E are, I predict a wonderful future!!
I'm glad that you are who you are, and that you will someday be my sister-in-law!! Love you!

Posted by: Ann at January 19, 2005 05:33 PM

When my kids were young, I never understood the phrase "they grow up before you know it." Now that my son just turned 15, I know exactly what they mean. So you are right Rae, we have to enjoy the ups and try to laugh at the downs, even if they hurt and leave splinters. I agree with Ann, too, because I have developed a wonderful relationship with my mom. But only I after I realized I wasn't the center of the universe and she wasn't an ignoramus. :D

Posted by: Mrs.E at January 20, 2005 08:25 AM

Cindy- I am hoping that that thing that happens to people as they get older- you know where they seem to only remember all the good times- happens to me :D

Ann- thank you. I think we will be, but sometimes I can get distracted by the "here and now." :D

Mrs. E- while my mom and I have had a lot of difficult issues to examine, wait- while I have examined them ;), we are far better now than we have been. I confess that while the list isn't long, there are some things that she advised me about that have been correct. :D

Posted by: Rae at January 20, 2005 09:59 AM

Rae, I'm new. Sorry to say something so relatively insensitive...

I guess I ought go back and read your archives!!

I have yet to meet a single person who didn't have issues - especially when it comes to family members. I've got a good share of that market with step-family issues. And I know how hard it can be to break the cycle of bad parenting because I had a pretty rough early childhood. Anyway, thanks for reminding me that I'm blessed because my mom isn't part of my problem.

Posted by: Mrs.E at January 20, 2005 03:37 PM

Mrs. E- no worries. I didn't think your comment insensitive at all :D

Posted by: Rae at January 20, 2005 04:19 PM

Thanks for understanding, Rae.

Posted by: Mrs.E at January 22, 2005 03:06 PM

Rae, as my older daughter and I approach our shared birthday next week, and I prepare to celebrate our eleventh year together, this post really strikes home. Well done. Well done. :::typed with a lump in my throat:::

Posted by: Cindy at January 22, 2005 09:00 PM

Ahhhh, Cindy...thanks :D

Posted by: Rae at January 25, 2005 12:32 AM
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