So many—too many to count—tiny pieces of folded white paper fall and fall and fall from the sky, blowing and twirling, looking like snow, a storm of notes. Men with whiskers shovel their driveways. School is cancelled. Children play. Ghosts roam the streets without aim. Everyone is oddly certain that the world is good; good things will happen. And every single piece of fallen paper, when opened, proclaims only one exclamatory word: LOLA!
A couple days ago, I talked to a nervous father-to-be, and I was trying to explain to him what a mind melting experience it was to witness your birth. I stammered, held my hands in positions that non-verbally articulated that something profound was on the way to expression, and—nothing. What could I say? You weren’t here. Then you were. Is there anything more amazing in all the world than that? You weren’t here, little girl, and—poof—you were. From nothing, something. The infinite trip from an undefined place called nowhere. How did you blast from the empty emptiness through the concrete moment into chronology? How now? How anything? How are things things, in what way, and to what end? From the moment your mother cried out your name—LOLA!—I was stymied by ignorance, uncertainty, and questions. There was only the sweet and gentle song of the mourning lily, tenaciously keeping the promise of her secret.
What I should have told him, but only thought of later, was that you emerged into the world in a shimmer of moonglow. With you came wonder, the reinvention of magic, and silver—everything came alive, all of it, between the shadow of silver and the mad, mad light of the crazed laughing moon.
Today, 10 years later, the world is still alive and singing and whispering poems about dark mist and amethysts. You’re my February girl. The promise of spring. Lola. You have taught me so much about our Imagination: how it’s not inside us; how we’re inside it; how we are nothing more than the stuff of dreams; dreams of the deep, deep sleep at the bottom of the sea; death. You told me that, scared, wide-eyed, shivering from a nightmare. “We are the dreams of dead things, daddy,” and I said “Yes. Yes. But we’re good ones, little girl. We are the good dreams.”
Merrily Merrily Merrily Merrily.
Happy 10th Birthday, Lola Blue, a decade of being the dream called you. Stay dreamy. Stay light. Live your life like a character in a story. Storybook characters laugh and cry and feel and hope and do all the things we call real, but they’re not. They’re imaginary—dreams—just like us. With all kinds of drama and conflict and rising action. Climaxes! And even resolutions too, sometimes, but not always. And today—it’s you!—you’re the main character in all the stories of the people who love you because you are 10 today and there is cake and balloons and presents and it’s snowing a million pieces of tiny paper that all say your name. LOLA! LOLA! LOLA!
When, after your long life, you finally wake, don’t be scared. I’ll be there, brushing your long, yellow hair, welcoming you back into the very good morning.
Read more from me at Black Hockey Jesus.
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