When we write together, Cathy is there across the table from me and responsive. We get to joke and puzzle for answers to the odd and interesting questions that arise between us. She calls me by my name and it feels normal that we are together. We enjoy each other while we work and write. She accepts my affection with smiles.
When we write apart, Cathy is invisible and remote. I can’t see her or hear her. Long awaited emails she sends me don’t usually include my name and never, ever sign off with any words of affection.
The ghost I was in my invisible role as first mother before we met again comes back to haunt me with the truth of what is felt but can’t be seen.
I fight the ghost back by making phone calls, sending affectionate emails, wondering about my grandsons and asking about how my daughter is faring in her life. My visibility wins over the ghost but does not penetrate the object of my heart.
Cathy does not hear me when I am away. My words roll off her like water trickling down the side of a rock. Even when I lived ten blocks from her house, I was a world apart.
Perhaps to her it feels close, even in all this distance, as I travel leagues between us.
My job is to love her unconditionally. Her job is to be a child in the world on her path of discovery and fulfillment for the potential of her life.
So I pray…and write…and hope… that it won’t be long before we get to write across the table again.
Then I can call her name and she will lift her eyes to mine in answer.
There is no ghost when we are together.
To read my daughter’s counterblog, please visit ReunionEyes.