By Daphne Biener
I hope this letter finds you well. Wait, scratch that – I hope it finds you in an extremely forgiving mood. I am sorry. Boy oh boy am I ever sorry. And thank you. And did I mention that I love you?
I’ve been wondering: how late is too late to beg forgiveness? Wait, before you answer: thank you. Thank you for not smacking that self-righteous smirk off my face with a cast iron pan back in the early ’80s. Thanks for retaining composure as I defied you, dared to call you jealous (please know I am cringing as I write this.) Stood with hands on hips and detailed why, OH YES, I WOULD be going out with that boy (yes, yes I know NOW that he was a sociopath intent on mayhem, but damn he was one hot psycho.)
And the eye-rolling. Let me search the far east to gather up enough humility to atone for my teen eyeballs’ need to reach for the sky every time you offered a ride then insisted on pulling up right in front and leaning in for a kiss goodbye. As if.
Not that I’m in any position to do so, but if you’ll allow me just one more whimper: It’s not fair! My daughter Kira is not yet seven but I swear if her eyes roll any further back they’ll peer straight into her brain (where she will no doubt find empirical proof that she is indeed smarter than I am.) And the mouth on her? Here’s how daylight savings went down at our house:
The scene: Monday morning. Unsuspecting Mama tucked harmoniously into bed. Enter Kira (or whoever it is that has taken possession of her sweet young soul):
Kira: MOM! MOM! DON’T YOU KNOW ITS NOT THE WEEKEND ANYMORE, MOM! HEY I NEED SOME PANCAKES BEFORE FIRST GRADE BITCH! (ok, maybe I made up that last part, but it was there. I saw it lurking beneath the seething surface and I cringed.)
Now I have heard that if we handle this phase right (because it IS a phase, right?) then the teenage years are sure to be a breeze. True, I’ve mostly heard this as my husband and I mutter it back and forth like some kind of mantra or offering, but still, it would not be fair at all if we had to deal with this twice, RIGHT MOM?
So Mom, I’m begging you. Show some mercy. Dave has done the math and it’s not good. Looks like we are on a collision course that will have menstruation and menopause detonating in our house in one cataclysmic boom. Please, Mom, lift the curse. You, Lady Macbeth, stared into your bubbling cauldron and did this to me. It’s your fault but I give up. You win. My daughters are exactly like me.
Now can you please make it stop?
To read “lift the curse” in its sestina form, visit Daphne’s site here. Not sure what a “sestina” is – Daphne promises to explain.