Wednesday, April 16, 2008

The GoodBye Girl's daughter grows up

I can't remember how I ever came across The QC Report but I've been reading this blog off and on for awhile. Although my kids are grown now, there's a lot of stuff here that I can relate to. It's written by Quinn Cummings, who first came to the world's attention as Marsha Mason's little girl in the movie version of The Goodbye Girl.

Cummings is not in the movie business anymore. She's the inventor of the HipHugger, a handy sling for carrying babies around and is now the president of the company she founded.

So that's the backstory -- child actor, middling career, gives it up, has a kid, forms a company, starts a blog, etc. While all that is interesting, I wouldn't keep reading her stuff if it wasn't good writing. And it turns out that Ms Cummings is a heck of a writer.

In this post, called Shouting Across the Divide, she starts off with her breezy, conversational style, which is all about the trials and tribulations of a modern, 30-something Mom and her friends. In this case, it's all about the fun finding a parking space at the daughter's ballet lesson.
For five minutes at the top of every hour there is a frantic movement of women hustling their leotarded girls out of classes and into cars, using their stained Starbucks napkins as semaphore flags to indicate that they will be more than happy to surrender their parking space as soon as they find their sunglasses, adjust their seat belt and pop in a DVD for the kids. Otherwise, we all drive up to the front door, eject a child, and wander off into the neighborhood to trawl for a parking space. Sometimes after fifty futile minutes spent driving around the block we just drive back to the front entrance and pick the kid up. I don’t understand why more mothers aren't diagnosed with vehicular bedsores.
But soon the tone changes and this light account of a dance lesson becomes an exploration of the mystery of the Mother/child bond.
Every time we let our children walk away from us, we’re practicing for the time they do it for keeps. And every time we let them go out into the world, even for a short time, some part of our brain thinks “No! Not yet! There’s no way she knows enough. I know for certain I haven’t taught him enough. Did I teach her the eyeball-gouging trick if someone tries to kidnap her? Did I get him to tolerate citrus fruit enough so he won’t die of scurvy? Did I impress upon them how unspeakably fragile I feel when I think about them doing something self-destructive? Does she know how I have never loved anyone on earth the way that I love her? Come back. Come back."

But the thoughts flash by in less than a millisecond and all our brain registers is “Remind him that his book report is in the outer pocket of his backpack.”
As I mentioned at the beginning, I'm not sure how I stumbled across The QC Report. That's one of the delights of the Internet - you never know what you'll find when you click on the next link. I like the blog and I like the backstory. I'll keep reading and now maybe you will too.


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1 comment:

Sue Horner said...

You are right, she is one heck of a writer! I stopped by and ended up spending 20 minutes. Got misty at one post, laughed out loud at several others. Thanks for the link!