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La Madre

It was a de-droning day which meant I suspended Wifi. Forced to find alternative distractions, my oldest son, who loves to draw, decided he wanted to sketch a portrait of me.

He took a photo with his cell phone as reference. I wasn’t happy about it because I was a mess, up all night, red eyes and crazy hair.  Looking at his phone and then looking at me, as if seeing me for the first time, he asked why my face was shaped like an egg. I just stared at him. He then proceeded to explain that my face and especially my forehead made everything too big at which point I couldn’t contain my laughter.

“Too big for what?” I asked laughing.

“Too big for 8 1/2 by 11” he said.

Tears. I was laughing in tears.

Three hours later he brings me the pencil sketch and I’m not sure how to react. The only words that came to mind were ‘Frida with eyes like saucers?’

Now, I’ve never considered myself to look like Frida. In fact, I know I don’t look anything like her. Also, my eyes are not the size of saucers.  Being Mom, I told him it was beautiful and that I loved it and all the effort and detail he put into it. Then I told him to scram as I scanned it in the computer for my someday digital scrapbook.

I looked at it again later, longer and thought about the meaning of artistic interpretation. Initially I looked at the sketch in comparison to how I saw myself.

I panned out to take in his shadowing; he had shaded a halo around my head and written “MOM” in the middle. My eyes were large and somber in his drawing but in the cell phone photo I had purposely smiled which made my eyes even smaller than they were.

“I don’t paint dreams or nightmares, I paint my own reality.” ~ Frida

fit his expression perfectly.

Tears. I was moved to tears.



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