“Write until you hit that nugget of truth,” we’re told.
Kelly calls down the laundry chute to me this morning before work, “Roi, do you want me to make you some eggs?”
“Yes, please!” I tell her, looking up from the fitted sheet I’m folding.
“One or two?”
“Two, please.” Eggs are delicious.
I arrive at the table some time later. My daughter is gnawing on something which is not an egg. She’s reading, too. Breakfast in our house is rarely a family affair. We come and go from the table, pop in and out, sometimes only half-dressed, in search of a shoe, a necklace, a key, hurry through, distracted by the day’s to-do’s, by our books, and by our devices. Breakfast is rarely a family affair, but dinner is. At dinner, devices and books are banned.
But not at breakfast.
“Thank you so much, Honey!” I feel well cared for. It shows. Kelly smiles.
Then she asks Miss E, “Did you not like your eggs, cutie?” They are still on her plate, one tiny bite missing.
“No. You made them all runny. I don’t like that.” She doesn’t look at either of us. She crinkles her nose. She lifts the edge of her bitten egg white with her fork, lets it down again, and turns her attention back to her book.
I’m stunned, although I shouldn’t be.
“That’s good for me to know,” Kelly says. “I make them like that because you used to like them… runny.”
“I don’t like them runny,” Miss E replies without moving her eyes. Kelly nods. Because that’s the truth, Miss E’s truth, here, this minute. She does not like the runny eggs. And she does not like talking. Right now. To us. That is her truth and it’s clear, even before I sit down hours later to write it out.
A few minutes later, I ask her to please thank Mama for trying. She does. Mama seems pleased – which pleases Miss E, too.
Over time, I hope this sort of interaction becomes its own reward — this thanking, acknowledging, making people who care for you feel good. That’s my truth.
That’s my own truth about eggs.
And then I wonder… If we all tell our egg stories, no matter how mundane, amid the stories of spelling bees won, goals kicked into the net, gracious manners and lessons truly deeply learned … If we all tell the truth about eggs, will we see ourselves in one another? Will it make us smarter, wiser, kinder?
As bloggers, as writers, as readers typing in the comment box, as friends emailing with friends, can we build the elusive parenting village in this technologically (dis)connected world with stories as simple as fried or poached or scrambled eggs?
If we write.
Just write our own truths about eggs.