Sometimes I look at my yin and my yang and I’m sure that one of them was found in the cabbage patch because they cannot be related.
One darker. One lighter.
One serious. One so not.
People are always amazed when I tell them that these two have never ever never ever had a fight. But then opposites attract and they are nothing like each other so what really would they fight about. Their give and take with each other is a dance to watch and admire and learn from.
But mothering these two different souls is exhausting because sometimes I feel like I’m living two parallel lives of advice because their same exact worlds they are living are so different.
These two went to their first sleep-away camp last week. When I returned from my trip all I wanted to do was sit on the floor with both of them and hold their hands and look into their eyes and hear every.single.detail of their camp.
The blond one could not stop talking about camp and how awesome eating hot-dogs was with all the bugs around, to how cool the rustic toilet was, to OMG they watched movies and stayed up late, and her horse was amazing and then she went from laughing to crying because she missed her horse, and now misses the camp counselors, and then rattled off every name of every person there and after telling me every.single.detail in full animation she proclaimed it to be THE BEST WEEK EVER.
And I exhaled.
So the brown one says “It was fine.”
No matter my prodding questions. Her answer continued to be “it was fine.” Which she also knows probably drives me crazy. Because I could tell something was wrong, but now I had to spend the whole day guessing what was wrong because she sure as hell will not share that information until she is ready. Which could be next Tuesday.
And what’s worse is that I know the blond one knows EXACTLY what the issue is yet she loves her sister so much that she cannot be bribed for information.
So I prod anyway because it’s my job…”Was your horse okay” “Did you like the other girls?” “Did you like the cabin?” “Did you have fun?” and they were all answered with a simple ‘yes’ – but followed by ‘it was just okay.’
Until tonight when out of nowhere when we’re talking about the price of eggs or something she says in one huge from her heart sentence “most of the time I just feel really left-out of things and don’t know how to be included yet feel weird even having to be asked to be included because wouldn’t they just include me in the first place if they really wanted to include me but since they didn’t they must not really want to be with me so why should I ask if I can do something too because what if they say no and then I know from their actual words that I’m not included and I don’t think I want to hear that so I just say nothing and then feel really bad to be left-out, and yet when I try to start something and invite everyone to join me in doing something everyone looks around at each other all uncomfortable like they don’t know what to say because they want to say no because they’ve got something better to do and then they either just walk away or I see them going to play what they were going to play without me and then I’m right back to not being included and hurt and not sure how to ask and then just feel so very alone. I mean I know Esther will always play with me but sometimes I want to know that someone outside of my family loves me.”
And then my heart broke into a million tiny pieces because that’s about exactly how I felt all weekend when I put myself in a room with 400 other woman, most of which I had never met, and felt like everyone had a playgroup but me.
It’s the cross of the shy it is. Those of us lacking some self-confidence, of feeling like we have nothing interesting to say, feeling like everyone must know each other already. And rarely all of that is true. We do better in small intimate conversations and usually have a few really really good friends and not large circles of acquaintances. We avoid large crowds yet shine at small dinner parties.
And really when your mother tells you how wonderful you are it really doesn’t matter in cases like this. I tell her to look for those people who care and love you. And to always look for that other person alone. Because there will always be someone else. And how you will make their day when you go sit by them and talk.
And frankly I don’t even know what else to say to her because I’m not sure what to say to myself.