Day Seventy Six: Mothers and Daughters

My girl and me.

I spent some quality time with my daughter today.
I think it was spurred by some insensitive comments from Dave regarding her eating habits  and I suddenly became a protective lioness from the wild. Do you want her to start a bad relationship with food? I asked him rhetorically, my arms crossed and chest puffed out. I was ready to throw a haymaker if he laughed at me. How ridiculous is that?

Masana means the world to me. I look at her and wonder how can this nearly-nine year old dynamo understand the complexity of the human condition. There are days when she treats me like a fragile thing, cooing and soothing me with kind words and strokes across my back. When I've reached the end of my rope with my son Mack, Masana has always provided the words of levity that make me not yell my head off.

So when Dave started digging into her eating habits, how she would be round and unhealthy if she ate cheese and crackers instead of fruit (okay, I'm oversimplifying the exchange of words between the two), I immediately jumped in. Masana was standing in the kitchen, looking lost and a little angry, and I hugged her. She resisted at first, but then I made her stand on my feet which was something she used to do when she was little, and we danced to an unknown tune, a tight embrace between us. She inhaled deeply, head resting against my chest, and I squeezed her tightly. She needed me and, I admit, it was nice to hold her so close. It had been a while since we did this.

I let her brush my hair all night long. She styled it in several ways, none which I care to show anyone. Let's just say that I'm lucky to have any hair left after the pulling and yanking I've been through the last 3 hours.

But I wouldn't change a thing. I think that this has been one of the best nights in the last three months. I love my girl. And the one thing that I've learned from this whole experience of my Mom passing away is that every moment counts. I hope Masana remembers today. I hope she feels how much I love her and she carries that with her for the rest of her life. There will be times when she might forget, when we are fighting over stupid boyfriends or things I won't let her do. But when my time is done here, I hope she will remember the night that I let her yank and pull my hair until no end, just so she could feel how much I love her.

Because I do. I love her like no other.