Do You See Me? A Question for Girls

Someone wise whom I can't remember said, "I write to know what I think." This is one of those.

My prayer today went like this:

God, I need a break!

I need a break from picking up the pieces every afternoon, as day crawls into evening and we are pulling punching bag up stairs to be beaten and to absorb the pain that we are weary of absorbing...

I need a victory because she needs a victory, desperately, and one that lasts longer than an afternoon.

I need her to come home smiling, for real, and not just because in her hunger and relief to be safe she has forgotten that really she's in pain.

I need her to eagerly walk out the door, just one day, instead of having to nudge her to walk the 50 yards to the bus stop and do it all again.

And it's torture to make us relive this, we who were girls and have already suffered our fair share of junior high days and junior high girls and junior high boys and junior high male teachers who shouldn't be and junior high rejection!

How brutal to resurrect those feelings and double the shame, making every rejection our rejection, again and again.

I need a break!

I'm tired of praying for her best. I want her to win. For once, I want it to go as she wants it to go. I want her to come home victorious, not requiring hours of making sense of it and shaping it into something manageable, tolerable.

I want to stop questioning, every single day, if it's time to fight on her behalf or if this challenge is one to mold her. I am done wondering if she's processing it correctly or through skewed emotion.

So today when she comes home from tryouts and when the cast list is posted, I'm just warning you, I don't have much left. Tank is empty. I'm fragile and cracked. Hear me? Thank you for listening, God. Amen.

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Have you noticed that all of the hilarious, make me feel normal in the insanity of it all, videos of motherhood stop at adolescence? Lots of get-me-through-the day toddler videos and now-that-they-are-talking humor, but dead silence around the is-anyone-feeling-my-pain-with-these-pre-teens stage.

Or is the absence due to the awkward truth that their pain is so familiar, so similar to ours? Sure, there's the crazy stuff that comes with puberty and immaturity, as one blogger describes so well. There's also the stuff of life, the crap we adults face all the time, put so well by Halee Gray Scott.

Perhaps the torture I felt today is that the question my daughter asks of friends, teachers, and coaches is "Do you see me?" and it's the same question I'm still asking.

do you see me-

I wonder, is it the question every girl asks?