Saturday, February 10, 2007

Breathe

I called the nice lady at the insurance company the other day to add Mariah to our auto policy. We talked for a while about which car she would drive, and what coverages we should increase, and then I agreed to give her all our money, and it was all fine.

As we hung up, she congratulated me on having a new driver in the house. "I have two boys," she said. "For a while you just hold your breath a lot, but then you let it out."

***

So Mariah drove on her own today for the first time. She called me when she got where she was going. It is only ten minutes away and she's driven there with me many times, but we both wanted to know she made it there safely. And I breathed again.

***

Earlier this morning I went to a funeral for the 23-year-old daughter of a colleague. (No condolences for me, please. I didn't know her, and the colleague isn't someone I know well, though she's been kind to me over the years. But no one should bury a child without as much support as possible.) The daughter in question was, all agreed, a handful. She was living in a group home when she died in a freak accident. I wondered how often her mother had held her breath, waiting to know how she was, where she was, who she was with. And I knew she'd rather still be holding it now.

2 comments:

anna said...

I thought I'd never breathe again, but then my Oldest went to college and my respiration went back to its old rhythm...until my Middle got his license a month ago! We are doing the exact same dance of calling in - he just called at 10:45PM to say the valet can't find his car and he needs to be home by 11. Needless, to say, when he said he would drive home "briskly" I suggested that "safely" would perhaps make him less apt to be pulled over. I'm waiting as I write - with bated breath.

Rhea said...

I've never had that exprience -- having a child drive for the first time. I would be soooo nervous.