My un/homeschooled thirteen-year-old daughter Daina has several addictions in addition to books which are, of course, her One True Love. In Daina-language, she says she belongs to “many fandoms,” which smacks of something between Disney and Dungeons and Dragons, but she’s a hard sell for corporate darlings, and she never burns when I douse her in holy water, so I find myself in the peculiar position of out-of-touch mom.

I, the youth group lovely who landed herself in a maternity ward two short years into college life, practically grew up with Daina. I still don’t feel ‘done,’ if I’m being completely honest. I can do Mom voices really well, though, and the littles in the house believe them enough to walk to Time Out unassisted.

This is proof of adultness, I think, that you can convince someone to move without yelling at them.

This is to say that, when I feel disconnected from this daughter-sister-friend, my heart breaks a little.

Here are weird things I’ve heard this week:

  • “Look, Mom. I just sheared my sheep!”
  • “Have you seen all this wheat I’ve grown?”
  • “Yes! I finally tamed my horse!”
  • “I have to breed my animals.”

This is the language of my people, but these words aren’t her own. She’s adopted my parents’ Alabama tongue. These are rural rumblings, and I’m looking at her like this:

kid meme

I’m fluent in Starbucks and have the human equivalent of echolocation which directs me to clearance end caps at Target. I don’t ‘sheep.’ I don’t ‘wheat.’ When I think of horses, Meg Ryan in Sleepless in Seattle comes to mind.

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