Privilege Blog

Happy Birthday To The Redhead, Or, Saturday Morning at 7:41am


Yesterday the redhead turned 25.

I gave her two pairs of shoes. Neither extravagant nor bold, as presents go. However, these days I know a lot about walking comfortably and  I’ve always tried to use everything I know – as best I can – to be a mom. Lucky mothers get to do that. The limits are implied if not overt.

Just realized that I’ve been focused on her feet for years. We’ve got a plastic bag of 14 Freed pointe shoes in her closet at home. Never used, because she got injured and put them aside. Never sold because, well, eBay is scary, and one never knows when one might just want to pull out the bag of pink satin and stand, quite still, in an empty bedroom.

This is not mournful. It’s just fact. The person who stands still only does so for a very brief moment.

More often I use her room for the ironing board. All that hissing and clanking and the smell of hot cloth. I think as long as you keep a space open, you can use it in many ways.

Happy Birthday sweet pea. Thanks for making me a mom. I love you more than very much.

The photo above is from a college dance performance. Used with permission from the beloved model.

41 Responses

  1. Happy Birthday to your daughter, and happy birth-day to mom. July’s a heavy-duty birthday month around here as well and you capture some of the wealth of feelings that swirl around these dates very well.

  2. Quelle birthday card!

    Even with this personal tribute, you have managed to enlighten all.
    I clicked on the link to Freed, and started my morning with a beautiful education on the making of pointe shoes. Ahh.

    Thank you once again, and Happy Birthday to your lovely daughter.

    1. Yes, to you BOTH indeed. And thanks to “the redhead” for permitting us to view this gorgeous photo, such grace!

  3. Do you support a local ballet?

    When we were at the Lincoln Center last month they were selling beat-up looking pointe shoes to patrons. The buyers did not look like they’d be putting them on to dance themselves.

    Perhaps yours could go to support a good cause.

  4. Congratulations to you both. Such an elegant photo and she’s obviously a very talented dancer. Beautiful. Made me all a little teary, to read such a loving tribute, as my daughter is getting married in a month – where did all the time go?

  5. She looks so graceful in that pose and I love her red hair, it is the same shade as my grand daughter Isla’s.
    Happy Birthday to your daughter!
    My sister is celebrating her birthday today as well.

  6. My comment disappeared so I’m trying again. Your daughter looks beautiful and strong and I think I detect a definite point of view. Well done Lisa. And Happy Birthday to your honey pie.

  7. Do I see a striking similarity? Happy Birthday to your beautiful daughter, and well, to you too… I do believe that we ought to celebrate our children’s Birthdays… sometimes, after all, we ought to be commended for surviving another year! :)

  8. I now know why my mother has kept my bag of point shoes.
    Happy Birthday to your 25 year old baby. They are always our babies.

  9. Turning 25 is something special; 1/4 a century, imagine.
    Nevertheless I´m sending your daughter and you my warmest Birthday Greetings!
    What a lovely picture of your lovely daughter.

  10. Lovely photo, and lovely thoughts. Happy birthday to your daughter, and congratulations to you! As it happens, today is my birthday too, so I think it’s an excellent and auspicious day to be born. Many happy returns!

  11. I imagine you are both so lucky to have one another.

    Happy Birthday to you two.

    Not fall from the tree that beautiful apple.

    xo Jane

  12. My daughter turns 18 this October and will leave for college next fall. I’m feeling nostalgic and a little sad about the whole thing. I like reading that there are other mommies out there who hold onto things…just in case.

  13. Happy birthday to your beautiful daughter. My daughter was also a dancer, which took her to NY with a scholarship to Fordham University with the Alvin Ailey Dance School. It was an intense experience, and after graduation she was soon ‘burned out.’ It’s difficult to pay the rent as a dancer!

  14. Wishing your beautiful daughter on her special day….Many Happy Returns of the day.Ida

  15. Using everything one knows to be a mom…that hits home. I work the same way. When my daughter moved to the other coast, I ordered six pairs of red shoes online and had them delivered to her office as a surprise. I come to red shoes later in life and was delighted to be ble to give my girl a shortcut.

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