I was ripping out the zipper on a dysfunctional blazer of Rosey's when she looked up from her tea party and asked 'Mama, what do you want to do when you grow up?'
I was kinda deep in the seam-ripping (It's a cheery sort of Swedish looking jacket that I found with no zipper on it that's been sitting in R's drawer for a good year, waiting for me to do something about it, and today was the day.) and did a very is-she-talking-to-me-or-her-dolls 'hmm?'
I never learned to sew. I was one of those girls in junior high, the ones who wrote letters and stomped their feet and finally got the principal to agree that yes, christ, you can go to wood shop and don't have to have compulsory home ec, now go away... So I spent a total of three weeks there, made a horrible, misshaped denim purse and broke more needles than the teacher had in reserve, then ran to the loud machines and sawdust and sweat smells of the shoproom. About now is when the ads start for sewing machines (just in time for Christmas!) and I fight with myself on whether I should ask for one from Santa this year - and if I got it, would I use it? Really? I mean besides a couple of cute things for Rosey? (And oh my GOD are little girls fun to dress. And I don't even have a really girly-girl.) The last thing I want is another thing to sit in a corner. I have enough dust-catchers as it is.
Anyway, that's the soundtrack I had running through my head. So R had time to repeat the question - and of course, this time she was staring right at me, so she wasn't talking to Sasha or Purple Bunny or Barbie, but me.
'Did you always want to be a Mommy?'
I swallowed. The short and snappy answer to that was 'no'. As a matter of fact, despite my early dreams of a baby girl, I really didn't think I would ever be a Mama. And I was okay with it. I was having an adventure, and enjoying it immensely - figuring out who I was in this newly-minted married me.
But that's not really something you want to tell your five year old. Not with her face tipped up to you and her dollies hanging on every word.
'I always wanted to be your Mama, Rosey.
But when I grow up, I'd like to be a race-car driver. Okay?'