April 9, 2014 § 11 Comments
In motherhood I have transcribed an entire language shaped with little more than a look. From across the table or playground, in a room full of strangers or snuggled beneath a book – there are conversations that occur without words. My children beg for space as loudly as they seek shelter, beckoning me near or pushing me away with a quiet plea.
This morning at school I pulled my car cautiously to the curb just shy of students gathering into class lines, honoring my daughter’s standing request to approach her day independently. Gone are early mornings of hesitant goodbyes or wide swinging waltzes down neighborhood sidewalks. She is efficient and particular about this practice, my daughter has mapped this moment of her day in her mind and I adhere to her need for space.
Most days I watch her with a carefully intentional casualness. My gaze falls just close enough to measure her movements for hints to the mystery of her thoughts, lonely for the cursory glance that fills my uncertainty with knowing. Today, rather than burying her eyes in the sidewalk or peeking to her peripheral to ensure her space, my daughter sought me with a smile.
Volumes of love in an unguarded gaze spoke of confidence and uncertainty, joy and wistfulness. An entire conversation twirled in the air between us before she said goodbye with a wave, her smile lingering in her absence.
Such a small gesture, a look, tethered to a lifetime of borrowed glances. A story strewn silently across the years.