Pinky's Book Link

Monday, August 19, 2013

Sugar and Spice... and that's what Little Girls are Made Of.

               Two year old Lulu and her birthday cake!

Like most mothers my kid’s birthdays make me a touch sentimental and tonight; the eve of Lulu’s birthday, is no exception. I recall a time about three weeks after she was born; I was nursing her whilst slurping tea and chatting with other Mums at a playgroup.

“Oh, my daughter just loves her dress-ups box,” commented my friend Marilyn.

Suddenly I felt weird… strange… something didn’t feel normal. Then I abruptly realised what it was. I hadn’t been jolted by the involuntary stab of jealousy I’d been subconsciously feeling for the previous six years every time someone talked about their daughters. It wasn’t until that precise moment I realised how much I had yearned for a baby girl for all that time.

And wow, what a daughter she turned out to be.

I’ve never tried to be her friend. I don’t believe that’s being a ‘good’ mother. Besides she has zillions of friends already. So different to myself and yet in some ways similar, Lulu retains three main attributes which continue to amaze me; her leadership qualities, her sporting and athletic talent and her ability to talk to boys.

It is the latter proficiency (probably an aptitude strengthened by negotiating life with four older brothers) which particularly staggers me.

To say I was painfully shy around boys at sixteen would be a gross understatement. All my friends had boyfriends and at one stage I even sunk to the shameful depths of inventing a boyfriend in grade eleven.

“What’s his name then, Pinky?” asked my friend Wilhemina.

“Gary… Gary Dubois,” I responded with sincerity. (Gary Dubois had been a guest actor on the Partridge Family the previous night and I thought the name sounded exotic enough to be credible).

“Where’d ya meet him then?” she persisted dubiously.

“At the pictures,” I answered, quick as a fox. I don’t think she bought my story but thankfully she dropped the subject and my reputation remained intact.

By the middle of grade twelve my lack of male companionship was getting to be ridiculous. 

I sort of fancied a boy called ‘Farcus’, even though I deemed his hair to be a bit too fuzzy for my taste and I’d never spoken to him or even looked him full in the face.

“Do you want me to drop a hint?” asked my friend Pip encouragingly.

She was tentatively granted permission and a few days later Farcus rang the home phone. He was a bit of a jock and captain of the volleyball team so of course I was forced to feign an affinity with physical exercise.

“I play squash every Saturday morning if you want to come along and watch?” I suggested, dicing with death. (The truth was, it was a squash coaching clinic for little kids.)

Farcus, true to his word, turned up at the squash courts on Saturday morning. Now I was never a Heather McKay on the court but the minute I sensed him standing at the top peering down I completely lost any modicum of coordination. 

I must have ineptly swung the racket fifty times and missed the ball on each and every occasion. You could have taken a bite out of my humiliation it was so tangible. But like a true gentleman, Farcus withdrew in pitying embarrassment and waited for me to finish outside.

“So what’s wrong with your leg, Pinky?” he queried, pointing to an unappealing bandage on my leg with a brown blood stain the shape of Tasmania seeping through.

Now I could have said it was a sporting injury, or anything glamorous really, but instead I answered a bit too truthfully.

“Oh, I had a huge wart removed a couple of days ago. It was right on my shin bone and the doctor said the roots were really deep.”

I never heard from him again and by the next week he was already ‘going with’ another girl (who had fuzzy hair as well) and eventually married her. I joke not. Good Luck Chuck… that’s what I was!

Happy Birthday darling Lulu!