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©August 2008

Carol Jane Remsburg


Becoming a Swan



How and when did it happen?  I knew it was coming, promising her it would, and yet, she’s not yet totally evolved, but the swan she has become is evident, at last.


From her first moments, she was but couldn’t accept it.  So like the tale of the ugly duckling who transformed, she could never see herself as I knew she was.  Oh, she’s had her flashes, most more recently than in the past.  Prom night was more like a Cinderella event, one where she felt lovely for a few hours and then “poof” midnight happened and she was returned to her former self.


To me, my child has always been beautiful, lovely, aggravating, stubborn, willful, and well, difficult.  She’s been smart and stupid at the same time, but children often are.  But lovely?  To me, always.  Yes, she’s spent years being the gawky one as others sailed past her in their own glory which will fade quickly.  My daughter’s beauty will be enduring, and she’s like another Disney character, Sleeping Beauty, Aurora slept to awaken to realize what she had become as well.


I could list them all, but the Ugly Duckling into the Beautiful Swan is most apt for her.  Lonely, bereft, wondering what was wrong with her feeling as though she didn’t fit it, rather than with her chin up centered in the knowledge that all things good would come to her with time.  No matter my entreaties, she wouldn’t, somehow couldn’t listen or believe.


Now she stands upon the precipice of adulthood.  High school is well behind her, college bound she is and into a whole new world.  Often her life has been one of stages, and many times with her hair, the lopping of it off, the growing of it long, the years she refused to have but the ends trimmed to hide behind her tresses, and now, now she’s pulling aside that curtain, to peek out and see not only herself but others.


She’s spent the afternoon chatting with her college roommate she’s yet to meet as they sort out the last of who will bring what to the dorm room they will share.  Most of all the shopping has been done save a few new shirts, and food stuffs they’ll hide in their room.


(Shopping for a college student is much like outfitting a whole new life, from bedding to microwaves to refrigerators to laptops to printers, and well, all the accessories of life including cleaning supplies and vacuum cleaners…the list is endless.)


But I think it’s the rapid transformation that has caught even me short.  I now have to accept she’s nearly there.  Oh, the trauma of motherhood.  It’s amazing to see how they become, and how they realize the wonders of life.


The evolution of Erin:






























Sigh, it's the normal progression of life, allowing wings to flutter, expand, and suddenly soar with all the power and exhaltation she never knew she had. Meanwhile, I'll keep my tears to myself.


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