I gasp in recognition when I see her. I, adopted, always loved, always cherished but always….just slightly more alone for the blindness my providence brought me. I dreamed of seeing my own eyes reflected, my strong legs built from someone who was connected by blood and not will.
Cast out almost, surrounded on all sides by those with the security of knowing exactly where they came from. I spent hours gazing at myself in mirrors, dusty windows, puddles, waiting for wisdom and belonging.
And when I did see myself reflected, when my eyes were finally swallowed by the blood I had craved, there was a sating, a measure of quiet that overcame.
But nothing like staring into the eyes of my second born, and seeing myself, squared by the universe. Seeing my wide eyes, darker. taking after her father, but delicate and lovely. The steel behind them, my stubbornness, tangled in her own charm and wit. Nothing has been like catching her stride out of the side of my eyesight and seeing my own muscles bending and pulling, legs which could settle a nation and wrap a lover tight.
Nothing like hearing a laugh full of candy glass, and knowing it’s more like yours than you’ve ever known.
She’s 5 1/2, and I stop her movements in the setting sun and plead, stop Ros, please, let me catch you in the light like a dragonfly and she sighs and smiles politely, the forced smile I can never make real ever.
Two of us who should never play poker. Two of us, transparent for all of our masks and putty.
Inside a somber self cradles a book, and sighs satisfied.