The Writing Mamas Daily BlogEach day on the Writing Mamas Daily Blog, a different member will write about mothering.
If you're a mom then you've said these words, you've made these observations and you've lived these situations - 24/7.
And for that, you are a goddess.
Sunday, October 05, 2008
In trying to be a responsible parent, last week I pulled aside one of the fencing coaches of my daughter and informed her that Natalia’s father and I were beginning the divorce process, and that this might affect her performance in class.
The coach said that indeed she was holding back, and that she was not progressing at the rate that they had anticipated given her stellar start.
A few days passed. As we prepared to leave the house one morning, I said – and it just came out like this – “Hey, Natalia, you go to fencing tonight. You have to train so you can kick some ass at the invitational this weekend.”
My daughter giggled. I shrank. Oopsy, I thought, I ought not use that language.
I could have said, "It’s okay to win. It’s okay to want to win. No need to be a lady."
Or, I could have gone the let’s-talk-about-our-feelings route. "You know, honey, Coach says you’ve been holding back. Is anything wrong? Do you want to talk about it?"
But, my friends, what I said worked. The next practice, she reverted to the aggressive fencer that she was before, and was much happier for it.
I remember the moment when I lost my fear of skiing. I was in a van with my brother and a bunch of his medical student friends, none of whom I knew and all of whom I feared. Vermont was six hours away. What would I do with all that time if I had no intention of talking with them?
I decided that I was going use the time to brainwash myself. I was tired of being a wimpy skier. I had been cautious way too many years, and I felt bored. So I began my silent self-hypnosis. I am not afraid of skiing. I am whizzing down the mountain and I feel exhilarated. I am strong.
The next day, I pushed myself off the chairlift and without hesitating, I headed straight down the mountain. I am not afraid. I am strong. Whee!
I want my daughter to feel the same liberation in all the things she does. If it takes a few choice words to steer her toward that, well, that’s what it takes. Language is meant to be used, no?
By Vicki Inglis
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