I’m sitting, drinking a loaded decaf coffee (almond milk and brown sugar – gawd I am decadent) at a round table for four at the Flightpath Coffee Shop. While is most definitely not Quacks, It is a decent coffee and snack place on Duval here in Austin. I have been joined by a woman who is amenable to occasional chatting about things artistically expressive, etc. I have allotted myself approximately an hour to be here to write and sip.
Today is another schlepp day. It’s really okay. My schedule is pretty open otherwise as I have been of late focusing on writing and put my trash transformations on semi-hold. Currently I am allowing the thoughts in my head and daily situations to be transformed into words on virtual paper, the refuse rests upon my work table awaiting perspiration (inspiration is always lurking close by).
It’s my daughter’s 40th birthday today. When I brought coffee into her room (I am a nice person, yes) whilst singing Happy Birthday, I marveled that forty years ago I was moaning and groaning and pushing and wondering why it was taking so damn long for her to just get here. Time certainly flies, too fast most of the time, on that day it didn’t.
I thought, in honor of her, today, I might flash back to a few early events in the course of her life. Many of these occasions stand out as being pivotal in my relationship with my firstborn.
“La La La” – Some may dispute what I heard, but if the years of her amazing singing which followed her initial melodic cries at birth, and perhaps her voice was merely music to my ears, she did indeed utter “LA LA LA”. Cool, eh? She continues to sing to this day, delighting many…especially me. Her voice is truly a gift to the world.
“I don’t want to” – Picture a very small child barely six months, standing up in her crib, propped up by the bars which would for a short time provide a barrier between her and the floor. She’s rocking back and forth, a twinkle in her eye. I tell her its time to go to bed, and her reply, quite clearly “I don’t want to”, with a subsequent wink and a smile. I said, “what??? You don’t even say MaMa and you speak in full sentences. Do it again!” She just looked at me and laughed. No witnesses there, but I swear I was not imagining it. She still has the same twinkle and knows how to let people know what she thinks and feels.
“Asshole, mommy?” – We are driving in the suburbs of San Jose. She’s probably three. Someone cuts in front of our car, causing me to abruptly put on the brakes and remark out loud “You….” She interrupts with “….Asshole, mommy?” I gaze back at her through the rear view mirror into the backseat at her with that same smart as grin I have come to know and enjoy. One might’ve thought the incident would’ve curtailed my penchant for expletives. It didn’t. She, however has a tamer though incredibly large vocabulary and an explosive gift with words in general.
“Where’s the placenta?” – She is about two weeks away from being four years old. We are in the birthing room at St Joseph’s Hospital in San Jose and I am in labor with her brother. She has attended Bradley Method birthing classes with her father and me; unlike the other children in the class, she has been extremely interested in the process of reproduction and birth. Everyone thinks its cute she is coaching me along with her father, has remarked how loud my yells are when I only have to push three times to birth her brother and then remarks “Where’s the placenta?” Her interest in learning has extended into many other subjects way beyond women’s reproductive health.
I could keep going, ad nauseous, to wax poetic on the many and varied events I have witnessed over the years, but my daughter might frown about further exploitation of her experiences for my own tawdry authorship.
My time is up. I’m off to drive here and there. Enjoy your day wherever.