Anne-Katrin Clemens


I can see myself in her, but only little of me. And I can see her mother in her. In her eyes. The defiance, the pride, but also the mishief. I can see her mother in her movements, in her facial expressions, in the way she speaks. She is so much like her mother.

Just as her mother she tries to be strong, not show weakness. Just like her mother she wants to refuse the tears. But I can tell that she is hurting and I can see the tears that threaten to spill. I can tell from the way she lifts her gaze to the sky from time to time and blinks away the wetness. I can tell from the way she presses her lips together, making them a thin line, to keep the sobs from escaping. And I can tell from the way she she forces her fists against her tights to keep them from pounding against anything. I can tell from the way her chest heaves with every breath. But just as her mother her head is held high and her posture speaks of her strength.

I am proud of her. But I wish she would seek a pair of strong arms, someone to comfort her. He knows she will come eventually. This too has she inherited from her mother. She will be stubborn and pig-headed, refusing to admit that she needs someone, but eventually she will break down and turn to someone close, someone she trusts not to hurt her. Few as those people are.

She always chooses her friends carefully. She is kind, like her mother, but she also doesn't give her trust away easily. It has to be earned. But she is young and she will have many disappointment ahead of her. I know. And it makes me sad that I can't keep her from them. Just as this one.

It was out of my power to keep her from having to bury her own mother. At this young age. Her mother should have seen her grow up and marry.

I am lost in thought and a little startled when she slips back at my side, putting her arms around my waist for support. As much mine as her own. I squeeze her slightly to share my strength with her. She gives me a soft kiss on my cheek and I look at her face. It shows the  refusal to show weakness, but I've learned to see beyond this mask. I can see her sadness and desperation. And I can tell that we won't be sleeping tonight. There will be many tears. She will be racked with sobs. Maybe she will throw things and yell until she is exhausted. Later when we are alone. But right now she will hold up. She will show her mask, her strength. And we will both support our grand-daughter as she buries her mother. As we bury our daughter.


All rights belong to its author. It was published on by demand of Anne-Katrin Clemens.
Published on on 09/19/2008.


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