Motherless #1

If you’re going to be motherless, you better be tough.

Lark is.

I try to keep up with her by periodically asking Lysle how she’s doing. “She seems fine,” is his (slightly irritated) answer every time.
What I gathered on my own recently, made me worry for her a little less.

Lysle’s teacher emails photos of the day’s class work to us parents.
One whiteboard was headed by this quotation:

“America was not built on fear. America was built on courage, on imagination and an unbeatable determination to do the job at hand.”

Below the grand statement a swarm of post-its had landed on the board: the kids’ responses.
Critical thinkers all, none simply agreed. Some just wrote: No. Others explained their No by pointing out how common laziness and fear are in the general population. Only one post-it asked a question:

“Who wrote this quote?? – Lark”

Clever, feisty girl, I thought with near-motherly pride. It’s what Lark’s mother Aura would have thought: Go, my girl, go.

Her two question marks tell me Lark is not merely asking for context, but because she’d like to give that Harry S. Truman a piece of her mind.

Yet, really, Lark’s living it. She’s embodying courage, imagination and unbeatable determination to do her job – to keep living motherlessly – in spite of the fear we all share.

Mama, too, was both. Motherless and tough.

Me, I’m working on it.

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