Wednesday, November 5, 2014

For the Love of Kate

Most everyone who meets her knows that she is my daughter and I am her mother.

This is Kate.

 And this is us.
We are literally two peas in a pod...similar voices, mannerisms and communication styles...there is no denying that we belong to each other.

Except when we're trying to get things done and my house sounds like this...

"KATE....K.A.T.E....where are YOU?  Have you brushed your teeth and laid out your uniform and grabbed your shoes?"

Oh yeah, mama...don't worry...I'm coming.  (ensue singing or humming or reciting of a prayer or a talk between two fairies.)

"For the love of all that is good and holy, Kate...where are you and why haven't you done what I've asked?  We're going to be late."

That's right, problem...I'm on it.

And this is the story of my life with her.  I live 99% of my life in the future and she lives 99.99% of her life smack dab in the present.  She is a budding artist, a constant repurposer of every material she can get her hands on, a dancer, a singer, an illustrator, a lover of color and fabric and a thinker of really big, really bold ideas.

She is not a multi-tasker, a strategist, an activist or a do-er.  No, she is in love with every detail of every moment exactly right now and the concept of time or projects to be completed alludes her.

How can this be?  We're cut from the same cloth.  She's my mini-me.  We're two peas in a pod, right?

And so it was last night as we were trying to finish up a First Reconciliation workbook that I lost it.

"You're not paying attention.  Focus on what we're doing.  You don't need to spend so much time drawing the pictures.  It's the words that matter."

And then I stopped.

I looked into her eyes and she was deflated.  Crushed.  Exhausted.

And I was so upset with myself and my response.  How cruel of me.

Kate's entire world is pictures, color, moments, details.  My world is words.

I turned to her, grabbed her arms, held her and said, "I'm sorry.  I promise to stop rushing you.  Show me what you're creating."  And her face lit up.

Laying in bed last night, I realized that God brings us the people we need on purpose.  While Kate might look like me in many ways, she is Kate and I am Kelly.  She teaches me to appreciate the beauty and the miracle of the here and now.  And maybe I help her to organize the beautiful mess along the way.

I love her to pieces and have to remember that God gave her to me for a short time not to mold in my image, but to help foster her own. 

Because of who we are individually but also interdependently, I see many "show down" moments in the future.  I just have to remember at the end of the day that a hug, an I'm sorry and the belief that it's most important to be who you are trump the necessity to be controlling over another, especially someone you love so much.

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