Beaut picked me up from the airport last night, accompanied by his beautiful little girl and her cousin. I’ve seen endless pics and videos of his daughter, and was ready to fall in love with her, and boy, did I ever. We are besties already. We both think pink is the best color, and we both refuse to share our ice cream with anyone, even with Beaut. Sound basis for a lifelong friendship. Watching her, all decked out in her Frozen leggings and pink sneakers, and her cousin, who looks like a serious little man trapped in a 4 year old’s body – I can tell that he is going to grow up into a very hot guy, the genetics in Beaut’s family are just ridiculous – sing along perfectly to Rihanna’s “Work”, busting out moves that would impress the pop star herself, is definitely one of the highlights of my trip. Beaut tried to have a conversation with me, asking me about some of the highs and lows of my trip (more on that later) but I couldn’t concentrate with all the cute going on in the back seat of the car.
How do parents survive the high dosage of adorable? It must be unhealthy, how it squeezes your heart till it hurts?!
I had to remind myself a few times of my lifelong conviction that I do not have a biological clock. Thanks Beaut. Thanks. With only a few months to go before I turn 30 for the 3rd time, I do NOT want to have an existential crisis, and discover a hidden desire to pop out mini humans. I’ve tasked him with making me witness one of his daughter’s “meltdowns” (he claims she doesn’t do tantrums; fond papa, right there) to help me snap out of this maternal funk.
They dropped me off, and I got a goodbye wave from my new BFF.
Something about how Beaut talks about his daughter, and especially witnessing him with her, reminds me so much of my relationship with my mother. Not all parents with their kids trigger this feeling in me. Most of the time I think they are cute, because parents & their kids usually are, but even my friend P-dot’s beautiful children who call me Auntie Vanilla, and give me as many hugs as I want (and I want a lot) don’t elicit this mix of nostalgia, grief, and love, the way Beaut and his daughter do. Its bizarre, I don’t even want to know what Freud would make of it, that when Beaut talks about his daughter, I feel my mom’s presence so strongly, it is almost tangible. Confusing, comforting, and nothing I can do about it. In my more superstitious moments, I take a second to pray that she will watch over them, that they may be blessed with as profound a love and life as I shared with her.
In my nostalgic haze chez moi after that amazing car ride, I searched for a movie to watch to calm down my emotions enough to fall asleep. Instead, I watched the Princess Bride, one of the greatest movies of all time, which triggered even more memories of me and my mom. (Seriously, I love that movie. No other family has ever come close to it, in my opinion. Good for kids, and perfect for adults. Nuanced, where the most interesting characters in the movie are flawed, hilarious, full of adventure, romance, comedy and sword fights… Best movie ever. Ever. No discussion possible.)
I fell asleep.
Did I dream of pirates, princess, adventure, sword fights and true love? No.
Did I dream of friendships and a little girl with a squeaky voice and frizzy hair? No.
Did I dream of my mother? No.
Did I dream of work, one of my usual dreams of relentless stress, and anxiety, and to-do lists that never get shorter and only get longer? No. Did I dream of the office politics, tension, stakeholder management that awaits my return tomorrow? No. Did I dream of the 7 tax returns that I haven’t started and that are due in a week’s time? No.
I dreamed that I went grocery shopping and purchased ten ripe tomatoes, which I boasted about to several people in the store, and discussed at length with the girl at the cash. Paper bag vs plastic – huge implications on the ripeness of tomatoes, you know.
Maybe I do want to know what Freud would make of that. The unfulfilled, unacknowledged maternal side to me is starving to death the way vegans starve for proper food? My life is so devoid of purpose and meaning that I think tomatoes are an acceptable topic of conversation? If I can care that much about a fruitgetable, I am ready to have babies?
Sometimes I amaze myself with my weirdness. This was one of those times.
To quote Freud, sometimes a cigar is just a cigar.
That being said, I can imagine how this kind of feeling can be overwhelming.
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Dreaming about tomatoes is the opposite of overwhelming, let me tell you. Disappointing is more like it. 🙂
I was actually referring to seeing a child with her parent and feeling that it mirrors how you were with your mother. I’ve got a personal parallel, and for me that type of situation really hits home.
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Yeah, it really does, doesn’t it?
I wasn’t sure if Freud would have a field day with the fact that it just so happens that this mirroring feeling is triggered by a guy I was romantically involved with. Seems like something Freud would opine about.
But who cares, really? The feeling is what it is, it hurts and is wonderful at the same time.
Welcome back… I have to believe your Mom is listening to you.
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I have to believe it too. So many things Beaut says about his daughter, the things he worries about, the doubts he has about his parenting, are almost verbatim things my mother used to say (except in French) to and about me. The feel of his love for her, reminds me of the feel of my Ma’s love for me. So much. Watching their ongoing Love in the present tense brings my mother’s Love into the present tense too, instead of being something I only experienced in the past.