Dear Universe, Thanks for the Sunrise

sunriseDear Universe,
Thanks for this morning’s eye-burning sunrise because when we got into the car, Only was like, “I’m so cold I feel like I’m naked in a snowbank,” even though it’s fifty degrees outside and she’s wearing a flannel, but because middle school is the Land of Extremes, she clacks her teeth, blasts the air, and splays her hands as if the vent is a tiny campfire while I’m turning out of the driveway and whammo! that big orange ball is right at eye-level, blinding us both, and Only says, “Aaaa!” and starts fumbling with her visor because she’s finally big enough for the front seat and she HAS a visor, but angling the thing just right takes the focus of fractions, yet still she notices me as the road curves, I’m blinking behind my sunglasses, wincing against the brightness, so she twists HER visor to shield MY eyes, and for a second I feel guilty and proud in equal measure wondering if she was motivated by generosity or the practicality that I’m the one driving, and as she turns up the volume and pop music bounces around us, I think of myself in middle school rocking out to Hysteria at my first concert and I say, “Wanna go to a concert sometime?” because I realize she’s never really been to a teen-style concert, just Brandi Carlisle at the performing arts center with me and her dad, which probably doesn’t count, so I add, “you know, since you’ve never really gone to one,” and she says, “Yes I have—with you and dad,” and I say, “No, I mean a real kid concert,” and she scrunches her face and snorts, “Kid concert? You mean like Backyardigans 2014?” and I laugh and shove her shoulder, “No, like Iggy…” because that’s who’s playing on the radio and I know this because I can read the name on the screen, and she corrects, “Iggy Azalea,” but because she’s made me laugh she’s smiling so wide that the sun—I’m not making this up—it freaking shines off her teeth so they GLISTEN and her gray eyes both reflect and deepen at the same time like this one pool at Yellowstone that looks gray at first, but turns dark blue-ish green when you’re right up on it and my chest squeezes so tight because right there in the car on the way to middle school talking about Just Life with my daughter she is the most beautiful thing I’ve ever seen—more beautiful than a pool in Yellowstone or a famous pop star or the sunrise—and I think I might cry but she gets pissed when I cry because it’s “super embarrassing” and I’m her mom and am supposed to be strong so I turn and stare straight into that fat bright sun and give my eyes a reason to water as she says all convicted, “I like Brandi Carlisle,” brandi-carlileand I say, “Yeah. Me too,” and then we just drive until she’s opening the door, and I’m saying, “Have the best day ever,” and am missing her even before the door slams and am super grossed out by myself for being such an emotional mess, but there’s that sun shining on her backpack as she walks into school, and there’s that sun, higher now, lighting up the school and the fields and the yellow and white stripes on the road, and nobody, not even the Goopiest Mom in PMStown, can feel bad when the sun’s up there shining like that, so anyway, thanks Universe, for the sunrise.


11 thoughts on “Dear Universe, Thanks for the Sunrise

    • Oh Brandii, I miss you so much and wish we could talk more often. I even miss AK…in September! Did you happen to see that lovely picture Joe Davis posted of, I think it’s upper Summit Lake and the mountainside, anyway, the leaves were all orange and green and brown and the image made me miss the peninsula SO BAD. I feel envious every time I see one of your beautiful rowing pics. Keep posting those. Glad you have such a full and beautiful life, friend.

  1. Love it! Pure love, joy and connecting with humor….if that isn’t representative of God’s presence through this Universe I don’t know what is:)…..Thanks for blessing us with your eyes, your mind, and your words, Miss M!

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