Like I remember learning to read, I can actually remember the moment when I first realized the power of the pencil in my chubby fist. That pencil combined with the new knowledge in my mind meant I could create a concrete record of my words and ideas formerly intangible. I remember when any excuse to write something would do, when “BeTSy” started to appear crookedly on the covers of all my thin books. If I squint my memory a little I can even recall a time when I had to pause and decide which way the tail of my “y” should be curling.
I watch my daughter now, leaning over the table and whispering sounds and words to herself as she laboriously transcribes her ideas. She feels the magic I still feel, this one. She, too, looks for reasons to write things. This past weekend, for the first time in over five years of being mommy, I went away for a few days as my sweet hubby sent me to visit a precious friend. “Help Daddy know where to find the Sunday outfits, okay?” I said on Thursday. Later I found this:
She writes us notes and leaves them all over the house. Sometimes there’s a crackle of paper as I put my head down on the pillow at night. I reach under it and pull out the paper and turn the lamp back on.
She writes songs, she writes poems, she writes stories. We’ve been reading Aesop’s fables together of late and one morning she wrote a fable. In case you will enjoy it, I reproduce it here, spellings corrected:
“Once there was a worm and he said, ‘I wish to have a turtle shell.’ But then he realized that the shell was too big. Then he was trapped. The next day he was dead. And then his friends missed him. The end.”
On the first page was a picture of the worm. On the second, his demise. It was captioned with this: “The red thing inside the turtle shell is the worm.”
The moral of the story? The same as the city mouse and the country mouse, of course. Be sure you can better your situation before you change it.