Posted by: Kate | February 21, 2008

Woe is she

Emily’s walk from the bus stop home is two blocks long. It takes me about two minutes to get there, and that’s if I’m really dawdling. It takes her, conservatively, an hour and a half. There are seven-foot snowbanks, random deposits of shiny rocks, discarded toys, and treasures untold between there and here, so you can’t blame her.

Today it took particularly long. Hours. Days, even. But today’s walk wasn’t the typical ebullient, adventurous meander; today was a head-down and feet-dragging experience. Sniffles and sighs punctuated the journey. She was Angst Personified.

She came home and announced that Annabel was no longer her friend. That she accidentally bonked Annabel in the face with the brim of her hat at the bus stop and now Annabel wasn’t speaking to her anymore and Annabel was never going to talk to her again and she was her best friend.

Annabel lives kitty-corner from us, precisely around the block. They’re not completely inseparable, but it would take some serious chemical intervention to tear them asunder. There have been a few small spats in recent weeks, which I chalk up to cabin fever and Too. Much. Snow. They’re both very active, giggly, tomboyish girls, with vivid imaginations and strong wills. They’re destined to love each other very intensely and hate each other with equal passion, as circumstances dictate.

So I knew the first big fight would come, and was just waiting for the day. They’d had a few small spats lately, so my radar was operating already, and today was the Blowout.

Normally, Emily has art class on Thursdays at 4:00, but today she announced that she was “just too upset to let anybody see me like this.” And since she had psychologist-Mom home instead of logical-math-guy-Dad, she was allowed to take a Mental Health Day from class, with the condition that she called, by herself, to tell her art teacher that she wasn’t feeling well, and then took some time to lie down quietly and relax.

She agreed to call Annabel after a bit, and got the answering machine. “Hi, this is Emily. I’m calling to say I’m sorry for what happened, and I hope you’re OK. Please call me later.” All with a minimum of preparation and prodding from Mama. And since then, we’ve tried on clothes (I indulged in retail therapy today, which is a whole separate post) and talked Girl Stuff , and generally had a really good afternoon.

I’m nowhere near arrogant enough to think that every childhood and adolescent crisis from now on will be dealt with as smoothly and sweetly as today’s was, but I’ll take the small victories, one at a time, when I can get them. She’s a good kid.



  1. The phone call is impressive.
    Some of life’s lessons stink. I hope she’s happy with tomorrow.

  2. Poor Em…I hope things look up soon. It’s no fun being a girl, sometimes.

  3. Awww takes me back a bit, I was one of a triangle at her age but only two of us were ever best friends at any one time. Lots of tears before bedtime I’m afraid. She’ll survive it I’m sure. Careful with the retail therapy now, you could be cultivating an expensive habit!

  4. I remember having my first fight with my best friend, that was so painful. I wish someone would have prodded us to work it out better. Retail therapy? you are a good mama doing that since I know how much you love to shop.

  5. Girls are so hard on each other.

    I hope her friend can get passed this.

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