After a five-hour convention meeting Sunday afternoon, I received a text message at 9:55 p.m. from my 23-year old married daughter.
“Y…es? I replied.
“Writing is HARD.”
Again, I answered succinctly, “Yes, it is.”
“Why would you choose to do that for a living? (You) must be craycray.”
This is the high school valedictorian who graduated magna cum laude with a major in chemistry and a minor in math from Indiana University. The same child who absolutely loved completing 4-H arts, ceramics, entomology and shooting sports projects — but absolutely abhorred filling out the projects sheets.
I admit I was one of those mean types of mom/4-H leader who insisted their children used complete, readable sentences — and of course, more than one-sentence answers. Which is probably one reason all three daughters quit bringing me their writings for a “quick look-over.”
With Chloe’s early knack for math, she learned quickly to ask her daddy about numbers and I seriously don’t think she asked me any math questions after third grade.
In high school, she only allowed me to read her English writings after they were graded and the year was complete.
So now when she asks me to look over some writing — even personal answers for a scholarship — I feel my mom endearment inside voice: “Yay, she still needs me.”
Besides the mom-adulation, I always learn something new when I get to read their writings, such as: “90 percent of the stimulation and nutrition to the brain is generated by the movement of the spine,” noted Dr. Roger Sperry, Nobel Prize recipient for brain research.
I didn’t know that, and of course I had to Google Sperry and read his quick biography.
But here’s the crux of reading my daughter’s work, which you will never, ever receive from looking over a math problem — I get to see into her heart.
In reading a writer’s work, you get the privilege of entering the door they opened up for you. It can be quite a vulnerable practice for the artist.
And without divulging what she wrote, because I am sure she would suspend all future reading/editing offers, I can only predict that Chloe’s future chiropractic patients will be as blessed.