Nine years ago around this time, Liam and our doula and I were walking slow laps around a foggy hockey rink in a city park in an attempt to coax our baby out into the world. Since she's always done things her own way, it would be another 14 hours and some pitocin later that we actually met Lily, but that night of misty darkness was an otherworldly time that marked my transition between being the mom of one to a mom of two.
Lily is a child who inspires me. She is fierce and strong like nobody else I've met. She is beautiful and vulnerable and impenetrable. She exudes generosity and has brought me to tears with her tenderness. Her appearance in my life ushered me into being the mom of daughters, and her birthday tomorrow marks a day where I learned a lot about myself and my relationship with Liam.
To commemorate her special day, I'm sharing below the story which Lily created today. As an extension of a FIAR activity where we examined and created characters, she dictated this story while I type. And so I give you, The Worst Week of My Life
The Worst Week of My Life
“Tweet tweet tweet” goes the little bird in the tree while I'm out under my favourite tree.
I'm under the tree because it's my favourite tree and I've lived in this town for my entire life. But today my dad says that we have to move because the air force relocated him. Tomorrow we have to move. I've lived here my entire life though and I don't want to move. But I guess we have to.
I was born here, I was raised here as a child, and this is the only place I've ever been. We've never travelled for vacations because my dad says that he always needs to stay here for work. I'm sad that we never travel.
Today when I got home from school, I walked in the door, sat on the couch, and sighed. “Aww. I don't want to move”.
Then – ding dong! The doorbell rang.
I thought to myself “My dad isn't home yet. He tells me not to open the door to anybody while he's gone. What should I do?”.
I sat up from the couch. I went up to my room and I had a view of the driveway below. The van was black. People with black suits were getting out of the black van. Then suddendly – ding dong! Blam blam blam! Crash! Bang! Pow!
“The door is broken!” I thought to myself. Then I heard thump thump thump coming up the stairs. I decided to hide under my bed. Somebody walked into my room. I was so scared.
I heard “Is anybody in here?”.
I recognized that voice. I ran out from under my bed. I came and I hugged the person. My mom had been gone for eleven years. I recognized her voice because we talked on the phone all the time.
My mom said “The reason why the people dressed in black are coming out of the van is that they are my guards. They protect me all the time because I have a secret to tell you.”
She whispered into my ear and told me a secret. I was so happy that I jumped up and down.
“Why didn't you ever tell me this?!” I asked. I burst into tears because I was so happy.
“Is Daddy like that too?” I asked.
“No,” my mom answered.
“But, but but...” I said.
“But, but but...” I said.
“No,” my mom said. “He is not like this and he never will be. Time to go. I'll meet you down in the car in five minutes. Get a jacket on.”
My mom left. I put my most special jacket on. It was pink with rainbows on it. On the hood it had a smiley face! I went downstairs to meet my mom.
I was just about to step off the landing when I heard my mom say “No. I will not let you do that. Never ever in my entire life.”
I heard my dad say “But please, please, please let me live with you! At least don't take all my money!”
My mom left to the car and my dad sat down at the kitchen table.
“Hi Daddy!” I yelled as I came down the stairs to go to the car.
I arrived in the car.
My mom said “You may play on your phone but be quiet.”
I answered “OK”.
We started driving. As we backed down the driveway, I saw something moving in the woods and we never had something moving in the woods. I was curious.
I asked my mom “Did you see that thing moving in the woods?”.
“Uh, what thing?” my mom answered.
We kept driving. My mom was listening to the radio. She only spoke english but she was listening to a french radio station. All I could understand was “Blah blah blah blah blah”.
I called my friend who knew how to speak french. I put my phone on speaker phone so she could listen. She said “OK, I've heard enough” and I turned it off of speaker phone.
I kept talked to my friend and she asked “Do you want to know what they're saying?”.
“Yes,” I answered.
“OK, fine,” she said. “Well, the thing that she's listening to is the news. The thing they were talking about is this wild crazy dangerous animal that's been appearing in people's woods”.
I gasped. “Do you know anything about it?”
“Yes,” she answered. “It is one of the most rare animals ever. If your mom has been listening to this she is a mad scientist”.
I almost passed out, but my mom saved me by saying “We're here!”.
I had to whisper to my friend because now my mom was listening. “OK, sorry. I have to go now. I'll talk to you in about fifteen minutes?”
“OK,” she answered. We both said goodbye.
I looked at the place where we were. It said something in french but I had no idea what it said.
My mom said “OK, you're staying in the car”.
“Why would she bring me along if she wanted me to stay in the car?” I thought. “This is so weird.”
I texted my friend “Hey, you can call me now if you like”.
Bing bing bing bing bing! My phone rang.
I answered “Hello?”
“Hi, it's me” my friend answered. “I found out why your mom has been doing all this weird stuff. I can't tell you right now though.”
“Why? Why?!” I exclaimed.
“Why? Why?!” I exclaimed.
“Because,” my friend answered. “Just do what I say. Tonight, when your mom is sleeping, pull her hair as hard as you can.”
We kept talking. I kept asking “Why why why?” but the things my friend kept answering weren't useful.
“Oh no!” I shouted. “I just realized we've been talking for five hours. Gotta go, bye!”.
“Bye!” she answered.
My mom got in the car and we started to driving. She just listened to music this time.
“You can keep playing on your phone,” my mom said.
“No thanks Mom,” I answered.
When we got home my mom yawned.
“I'd better get to bed soon,” my mom said.
“Ok” I answered.
“I'd better get to bed too,” said my dad. I said the same thing.
That night, at midnight I went into my parents's room. I got a flashlight off of their dresser. I shone it straight up so that they wouldn't wake up. I got scared but I decided to still do it.
I pulled my mom's hair as hard as I could. Pop! I looked at my mom. I almost died, I was so scared.
I thought to myself “I can't scream! I can't scream! I can't scream!!”.
I had to scream somehow. I ran out of my parents room and went outside. I screamed because I was so scared.
I held the thing up in my hand. I looked inside of it. There was green gloop. I was thinking to myself “It's a mask! I'm holding my mom's mask!. Wait. This might not even be my mom's.”
I was scared. The next morning, she woke up without the mask on. She was sitting on the couch watching a show. I looked at her and I've been waiting to tell you this part because it's so scary. My mom/what I think my mom is, is an alien! Or a monster!
I was kind of spying on her from our loft. She felt her face because it was itchy. She took her hand down and looked at her.
“Oh no, this is bad! Where did my mask go?” she thought. She took off her gloves that looked like human hands. She looked at her hands. They were getting all old and were getting dried out.. Then, she took off all of her suit.
She screamed “NOOOOOOOOO!!!!!”.
Her voice got deeper.
“Oh no! I'm turning...I'm turning back into incinerated dust!” she said.
She got transformed into diamonds and all sorts of jewels.
Clang clang clang! Thump! The jewels made as they hit the floor.
I ran downstairs and grabbed them all. I held them up in my hands and then the jewels all turned into dust. They fell out of my hands.
Two weeks later, my dad came over to me and said “We're not going to move. I don't want to move. It would be boring. The only reason I said that we were going to move was because your mother wanted me to. Well, I guess not your mother. She said we had to move or bad stuff would happen to you because she hated me,”.
Two years later, my mom showed up. I thought “Oh no! I hope that doesn't happen again!”.
When I pulled her hair only one piece of hair came out. She's my real mom and I'm happy about that. And that is what I told for school, only nobody believed me but my friend. That is the story of what happened to me.