Day 29: E is for Eve: A Random Collection of Cool Things About My Daughter

 I guess first you should read this?

Honestly, when I found out I was pregnant the second time (and I knew this time, I KNEW - I had felt my ovaries fizzing like champagne and the midwife said "you got a positive result that early?", and I put a pregnancy test box with a blue pawprint on it on the stairs for when my husband got home), I thought I had probably used up all my luck on that first really good baby. Not that I thought this one would be bad, but surely it would refuse to sleep, or cry all the time, or dislike me obviously from day one.

I could say that maybe she was meant for someone else, someone who deserved a break from the universe, but she was so clearly meant to be mine. 

My relationship with my mom was difficult. Neither of us was really wrong, we just really didn't get each other. She did the best she could, and I did not make it easy. Eve is like me in all the ways that make that relationship not just good, but FUN, and she is better than me in the ways that you want your kids to be better than you (and I don't just mean she can do math, although she can do math, thank-you Matt, that's all you honey).

When she was little and you asked how to spell her name she would yell "E,V, EVIE!" When she wrote it she would write a capital E, a capital V, and then a backwards capital E so her name was symmetrical as well as a palindrome.

Once I was putting her down for her nap, and I said "sleep well, Baby", and she raised herself up on her elbows and said "I....EVE...". Later on she demanded that I keep calling her Babe, though, so we worked that out once she realized I actually did know her name.

Last week on Facetime she said one nice little thing that happened in the week was that she finished her deodorant so she got to open the vanilla one that we hadn't been able to find for a while but finally did again, and I said "oh my god, I was going to tell you THE SAME THING". 

She also said about one of her friends that they kind of needed an attitude adjustment. Then she said "I've said that about a lot of people lately. Some self-reflection might be in order." 

Once when she was about seven we were sitting around our friends' kitchen island and there were cookies in the middle of it that the kids had been told they couldn't have until after dinner. I saw her staring at them thoughtfully and asked her what she was thinking. She said "You said we couldn't have them, but they're right there and nothing's really stopping us from taking them". I realized she had discovered that the Parental Prohibition was largely a fiction that both parties had to agree on, and I was afraid.

In grade eight I drove her and a bunch of her friends around while they were helping their music teacher to do music testing of grade sixes at area schools that would be in their music program the next year. At the end of the day she said her teacher said "I like your mom, Eve, she's funny -- oh sorry, that's probably embarrassing for you" and Eve said "uh, no, I like my mom too, I also think she's funny". 

She met one of her closest friends on day one of Junior Kindergarten, when they played with My Little Ponies together. She met her other closest friends in grade seven when they went to the same high school, although one of them was actually in her junior kindergarten class. They are the most amazing, self-aware, thoughtful, brilliant, hilarious group, and I have loved my time with them so much I can't even articulate it.

She builds her own IKEA furniture - one of the ways in which she is better than me. Once I tried to build something and I couldn't even figure out how to open the box. She said "I think I've got the hang of it. If I'm in trouble I think 'what would Dad do?' and it's always 'same thing I'm doing but harder.'

On the self-knowledge: Whenever there's a big day she always warns us that, good or bad, there will be crying. Once in grade twelve she came into my room at night and had a giant crying meltdown about going away to university, talked through some stuff, calmed down a little, told me a few stories about her friends, then said "my avocado toast was really good this morning" and went back to bed.

One of the ways in which she is not better than me: The first time she took Lucy for a walk further than around the block, I had to draw her a map so she wouldn't get lost in the fifteen-minute radius around our town. Then she got lost. 

When I had my interview with her teacher in junior kindergarten, she said "I'm pretty sure I could have left her in charge and things would have run pretty smoothly until I got back". (My mom said "she's loud and bossy", just for a different perspective on that).

I could go on all night, but I'm tired and it's almost midnight, and I am willing to entertain the notion that this will eventually get tedious for anyone who isn't Eve's mom.  And I have a sudden craving for avocado toast.


StephLove said…
I still remember that 9th b-day post, so beautiful. And this is, too.
Nicole said…
Right up top, that birthday post is one of my favourites that you have ever written. I remember where I was when I read it (Maui) and I still sometimes, when you write about Eve, think "she was dancing." She's such a treasure! What a gift to have such a daughter, and I'm sure she feels that way about having you as a mom.
NGS said…
What a lovely tribute to your relationship and love for your daughter. The teen years can be turbulent and I'm happy to hear that you have sailed through them smoothly!
Suzanne said…
Okay, recovering from the SOBS after reading the ninth birthday post...

She sounds so terrific, Allison. Just truly special and wonderful and I feel so lucky to know these little bits of her through your blog! Okay, I am all teary again.
Ernie said…
I loved the original post, but it does make me bummed that I didn't know about your blog back then. You probably know this, but on top of being such a great, fun, smart, thoughtful person - Eve is beautiful. I espeically love the fingerprinting photo. I love the 'some self-reflection might be in order' bit. I feel similarly to a lot of this with Mini, particularly the parts about how she is me - but better. Oh, I also love the meltdown that ended randomly about avocado toast.
Anonymous said…
Don't you ever, ever, EVER doubt your talent as a writer.

Or as a mom.



D in Texas

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