Monday, October 11, 2010
As I read The Kids Are All Right, written by the Welch siblings, their assessment that being orphaned wasn't the worst thing that happened to them, but being separated from each other was made sense to me. Not that being orphaned wasn't horrible, but that the only ones who could understand the pain and get each other through it was each other. Without one another to ground them, they were lost.
Having two children is, no doubt, more than twice as hard as having one. The financial cost, the attempt to make family decisions where of course they both want to choose something different, trying to spend quality time with both, parenting them differently because they are different people, but still attempting to keep things fair and equal, getting through a crisis with one and before I've sat down having a crisis with the other and the sibling rivalry can be exhausting.
But I wouldn't have it any other way. And neither would they.
They may whine about sharing a bedroom, but when one of them is spending the night elsewhere, the other has a hard time going to sleep without her sister there. They share private jokes, they make up plays to put on for me, they comfort each other, and they are the best of friends.
I understand their relationship because I have the same with my sister.
My sister is my best friend. My favorite childhood memory is the Christmas morning when she woke me up early so we could sneak up to see what Santa had brought long before it was time to wake up. We whispered excitedly about her new bike and my new Barbie house that were left unwrapped. We took our stockings back to her room to empty the contents and whispered and giggled together before we put them back. I felt loved, special, happy and warm all over just being with her and sharing something with just her.
Now, we share laughter when no one else gets it, and we'll inevitably say the same things at the exact same time with the exact same inflection when we're together. We call each other sobbing, we call each other excited to share our latest best news, and we love each other too much to let any of our faults get in the way. With each other, we are totally and completely free to be ourselves.
The scariest thing about being a single mom was what would happen to my girls if something happened to me. I was anxious to finalize my divorce so that I could put my will in place and ensure that they would indeed be all right - and together - if I wasn't here to care for them. And someday, I won't be. There's a certain comfort in knowing that when that day comes, they will be holding each other and together, they'll get through it.
Read more posts on The Kids Are All Right: A Memoir at the book club site, From Left to Write.
While I was given the book to read for free, I have not been compensated for this post. The link to the book is connected to my Amazon Associates account, and any purchase made from it will generate a (very) small referral fee for me.
Posted by April at 12:00 AM