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Tuesday, November 16, 2010

The Child Who Chose Us - Part 3


This is a continuation of a series of post about our wonderful Deidra, the child who chose us. The series starts here.

So, time passed and Dej became a big part of our lives, spending several evenings with us almost every week. We would hear the front door open, and the clicking of her Jimmy Choos on the tile floor, as she called out “Honeys, I’m home!”

She would find us, bestowing hugs and kisses all around, then she would pull out the cocktail shaker and make Martinis for her and me. Poppy always drank a glass of white wine. We would sit on the deck and watch the sun go down and talk and talk.

We often went out to dinner. No John. He always had some excuse. And as time passed and her April wedding loomed, my concern that she was making a mistake galvanized. She even expressed doubts of her own. Three weeks before the wedding, we sat in her Yukon in a parking place in front of a shop where we had gone, and she cried and said she wasn’t sure about the marriage, but that she thought John would change, loosen up and be more social.

Having myself once been young and naive enough to think I could change a man, I knew my words were wasted, but I told her anyway that she had no power to change John, that she could only change herself. I knew my words fell on deaf ears, but I had to say them. I even told her that, if she wanted to call off or postpone the wedding, I would get with her mother and that the two of us would take care of everything.

The wedding took place, and for a while we saw less of Dej. After a few months, though, she, being the gregarious and social being that she is, once more started coming to see us often and going out with us. In spite of repeated invitations, John never darkened our door, and in the two years that the marriage lasted, he only visited her parents’ but home once.

During those two years, we became closer, more in love with this beautiful girl with a loving and giving heart. She became, indeed, the child who chose us. She came to me (Poppy was an emotional coward) for advice and I in turn learned a great deal from her. Never having been very outgoing, she taught me to plunge forward into social situations. I learned to smile from her, and it changed my perspective on life. Because of her, I smile and speak to nearly every person I meet. And they, for the most part, smile back.

Wonderful, isn’t it, to learn such a life lesson from a young person? As I get older, I treasure her friendship and love more and more, and I have made if a point to get to know younger people. One of my best friends now is 12 years my junior. Knowing it’s a cliché, I am going to say it anyway, because it is true. Younger friends keep me younger. Dej dresses me, for God’s sake - or she does her best. She is my fashion police, a challenge for her, for sure, she who wears Manolo Blahniks, trying to do something with me, who live in Birkenstocks and Uggs.

The next episode is here.

© cj Schlottman


KeLLy aNN said...

Family is Family because of the way You LoVe them...

Sue said...

What a delightful story. Thanks for sharing the rest of it.


Katie Gates said...

Wonderful post. I'm really enjoying this story. And I agree, too, that it's important to have younger friends. Actually, friends of all ages...

faith said...

Thanks for sharing. I agree that all ages can learn from one another. Friendships shouldn't be limited to our peers.