From January 21st, 2005
Sami and I have a secret, sacred mother-daughter code. Anytime that we share
something with each other that we don’t want anyone else to know, we put up
our pinky fingers, lock them, do a little circular handshake and intone
“Mother-daughter sphere—promise?” This is to keep Sami from spilling out my
most embarrassing moments (which I spill out perfectly well on my own), and
it keeps Sami’s adventures from winding up in a magazine, book or blog (at least without her permission).
Sometimes, on rare occasions, I forget to use the code, thinking that some
things will just be assumed as private, personal information.
Not very smart.
So we went to Austin this last weekend. Brian, the man I’ve fallen in love
with, came along to sit under the spotlight and be interrogated by some more
family members. He did well. He played basketball with the boys, talked with
my niece and pulled out all the paperwork on his financial, medical and criminal history for my brother and his wife to peruse.
And still, I thought, he loves me.
So back to the sphere. One evening we went bowling with the family. I took my turn, bowled the perfect strike and turned to see Sami talking to Brian. He was grinning. I was suddenly nervous.
“What’s going on?” I asked.
Sami took her turn and Brian was still smiling.
“Talk to me, Brian.”
“Sami just informed me that I need to marry you in two months.”
I gulped. “She did?”
“She just wanted me to know that you would say yes if I asked you.”
I remembered the conversation. “Mom, would you say yes if Brian asked you to
That was it. No pinkies in circular motion. No mother-daughter secret,
sacred code. What was I thinking? I tried to redeem the moment by putting on
my most mysterious and alluring look. I tried to bat my lashes. I went for the
I-will-say-yes-but-I-want-to-maintain-the-element-of-surprise attitude that
I once had going for me. I fluttered my lashes again.
Brian peered at me closely and asked if there was something in my eye.
I shook my head and smiled in my full-on embarrassed dimpled goofiness.
And still, I thought to myself, he loves me.