I thought I’d illustrate some of my life’s key roles in the first version of my bio for this blog. So I went with an initial stream of consciousness listing daughter, sister, and wife … mother, friend, and employee.
In no particular order, really. Except for daughter, which has been a defining role in my life. It was my first relationship.
We all know how that goes. Love ’em, and hate ’em, when it comes to parents. They do everything right. Can’t do anything right. Yet for those who are lucky enough, as I was, they end up being more than just a biological fact..
My parents shared in my greatest happinesses, and deepest despairs. They were a phone call away, or an ear to listen as I worked it out myself. (At other times I gave that important job to a shrink, but that’s another story!)
I got into the habit early on of picking up the phone to call. It became automatic. The body doesn’t forget.
I was sitting with my 13-year-old the other night through the first awful hours after a surgery and reached several times for the phone, needing reassurance I was doing everything right.
I still have that instinct a lot even though they are both gone now. The whole empty truth of it, when it comes to the bio of me, is that I was a daughter, but I no longer am, really.
Now I am the anchor at the other end of the phone for my three children. The one others seek for balance, to salve fears, and share joy. I can, and do, get that reassurance from others. But it isn’t the same.
Someone Mindy knows said you never really grow up until you are an orphan. We build relationships over life’s course, only to lose them. Whose great idea was that?
I eventually took the word “daughter” out of my bio, then the whole string of words, then wrote an entirely different bio. I think Mindy’s friend is right. But I’m not liking it much.