Tag Archives: daughters

dust bunnies

she was supposed to be gone hours ago

early this morning she telephoned to ask if we’d take care of her cat –
she was headed south to be with her dad who was coming out of hospital

her sister would be joining her to do some research into “facilitities”

“too soon,” says dad

this was the conversation we had midday on the stairs
she was taking her trash out, purple cleaning gloves on her hands

she was supposed to be gone hours ago

but now in late afternoon I hear vacuuming upstairs, every single room

cleaning dust bunnies from every nook and cranny is easier than difficult conversations


My daughter and I walked into the store and began to scan the racks.  At the back of the store we paused by a display of jeans and  each of us held up a pair. Since we had found one thing worth undressing for we decided to look for more.  Separating, we continued browsing and rendevoused back at a dressing room.

With the door closed behind us, we dumped our finds on the bench and laughed.  We had the same cords, same jeans, same turtlenecks and same blouse but in different colors.

As they say: Acorns don’t fall far from the tree.


In the Victorian language of flowers, dahlias symbolize dignity, elegance, and a bond that lasts forever.

My daughter took me on her favorite route last Saturday, past many gardens full of dahlias.   Usually she jogs, but I have to walk.  It was hot, I should have brought water.  I listened to her chat about work, her friends, the life she’s made for herself in Seattle, her current challenges and hopes for the future. She wisely characterized this period of her life as one in which she is forming herself as an adult in the world and establishing a new way of relating to us, her parents.

I remember thinking the same thing when I was in my twenties.  I spent a lot of time figuring out how to be true to myself, acknowledge the support my parents had given me growing up and yet separate myself from them.  I was trying to relate to my parents as an adult, be a sibling without being a child, and create a community of my own.

I huffed and puffed and paused a lot on the stairway she took me up, wishing again for a bottle of water, chugging on because I knew there would be a view at the top.

There was a view, but instead of the bay and city before me, I snapped a picture of  my daughter, a strong and vibrant woman living her twenties soundly.

Though the dahlias are fading now in September, they are a colorful reminder of us, two women who have dignity, elegance and a bond that will last forever.