Braiding her hair in the dark felt like taking up a mantle, here I am, playing the mother. Almost a decade of being a mama to daughters, and in my heart I am sometimes still the girl.
I fished out nightgowns for dolls, tucking the freshly clad babies up against a three year old’s shoulders, and played Enya on the phone. This thing about being a mother to daughters, it is its own thing, its own experience not greater or wider or deeper than mothering sons, just different, just…its own. As they grow older I am again and again bumping up against myself as a child, myself as a preteen, myself as a young, burgeoning woman just waiting to bust at the seams.
There is enough of myself in my nine year old daughter as she clutches a new journal to her chest and crows with delight over the potential of the blank page – enough of myself to make me feel uncanny. There is enough of myself in my six year old doe-eyed baby as she cries big thoughts about death and life and God, enough to make me remember, enough to make me revere.
That sacred soul of life, as if there is one Soul, one Being, and from it we each derive our own bits of spirit and so live. And so I glimpse myself, and I glimpse God, and we are part of a whole of all creation, and it is uncanny, thrilling, and heart-breaking.
I braid the hair in the dark, wet strands beneath my fingers, and she tells me stories.
She tells me stories of the world through her eyes, reality through her own heart and mind. I listen, and I am learning to see not just her, not just her sisters, but myself, the whole of this vast world, and the Great Soul Above who makes us all and moves us in his own Being. My awkward child of wonder, with gangly limbs and sprouting bits of adult soul-life. Miracles, yours. Hearthstones and tables of olive branches and joyful mothering, womaning, in all the forms, may they be yours. Abundantly, abundantly, yours.