I love words. I always have. I remember being four and seeing a faded hexagonal shield with white block letters that no longer reflected the light so well. I remember each separate letter. And—I swear, this is true—I remember the word. Not my first said word. It was my first read word. “S-T-O-P!” I was in dad’s little Nissan truck with the white cap. I strung each letter together. I came up with a word. I didn't heed its meaning, though, because once I started reading, I never stopped.
The written word lends tangibility to emotion. Things that are hazy become real; the fleeting becomes permanent. A word can be funny, serious and sad.
I read a lot of words now in the form of weblogs, particularly those of other mothers. One of my favorites is Redneck Mommy. She serves up heaping portions of real life to sit back and savor, and she doesn't forget to pass the puns. Sometimes I read her posts and laugh, sometimes I cry. There are times I go to her site and have both those reactions simultaneously. I think she must love words, too.
A fellow writer, Mrs. Chicky, asked us not to be stingy with our own words when it comes to showing appreciation for the blogs that mean the most to us--and to do it now, not later. Redneck Mommy told us to make the most of the moments at hand. They're smart women, these mother bloggers. But you don't have to take my word for it.
T, this one's for you. It's been my favorite joke since I was about nine. If you've already heard it ... well, just humor me, okay?
A woman has twins and gives them up for adoption. One of them goes to a family in Egypt and is named "Ahmal." The other goes to a family in Spain; they name him "Juan." Years later, Juan sends a picture of himself to his birth mother. Upon receiving the picture, she tells her husband that she wishes she also had a picture of Ahmal. Her husband responds, "They're twins! If you've seen Juan, you've seen Ahmal."