I have in my notebooks, Word documents, half a dozen sketches about this week. Reflections on consent, privilege, and race. Reflections on social media, connectivity, and mob mentality—and Facebook in particular—I think I’m opting out, by the way, loves, but more on that later in the month. Reflections on teenagers and their pain and beauty. Reflections on the second adolescence that is my forties, and perhaps yours. Narcissistic reflections on what I want, what I don’t want.
Not very much angst about who I am. That, I know and you’d think everything would just flow from that. Yet, it doesn’t.
Ender: You are my Mama.
I am. And so many other things, my little love. But always your Mama, yes.
This little love of mine is nine, but when he curls up in my arms he might as well be three. I wonder if all third or last babies endure this prolonged infantalization. Sometimes, I fight it—I wish he was a tween—fuck, what a terrible word, btw, made up, imagined life phase, too-fleeting and ephemeral to matter except to marketers. And sometimes, I am so grateful I still have my baby that I am still the mom who can fix almost everything with a hug and a kiss.
Not as easy any more with the teenagers.
Sean: They’re good kids.
They’re amazing kids. But they are now metamorphosing caterpillars, caught in the limbo between childhood and adulthood, a time that was never easy and that now seems impossible.
When I meet people nostalgic for that first bloom of youth, that first adulthood, I always think they must have very bad memories. Who on earth would miss that excruciating pain of that first self-discovery and those first attempts at self-actualization?
It’s bad enough the second and third time around.
You: You in a cocoon, metamorphosing again?
I wish. There is a certain appeal in being recombinant liquid swooshing around into its next incarnation in the protective cover of a chrysalis. No. I’m no not metamorphosing. That metaphor does not fit right now.
But I’ve been running, flying very hard and I need to take a break. Rest on a flower.
Her: Just one? You’re not lusting after a meadow full of flowers?
A meadow sounds nice. Sunshine.
This week, the notebooks are full of sketches like this. This one is no better or worse than the others; representative, I suppose. And probably should not be shared either. Technically, it’s just not very good, and I’m paying a lot of attention to technique these days.
I’m also committed to a certain production schedule and deadline.
So there you go.
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