All I could think was thank god I am not twelve (they were not older than twelve) and looking down a long road filled with heartache and self doubt and being so sure I am right when I am so embarrassingly wrong every single time.
They actually looked like they meant it. All of the gestures were there. And when they stopped kissing, they didn't fidget awkwardly. Or laugh or snicker. Or babble uncomfortably. Or even, get up and walk away. They embraced--gently, and way too passionately.
And then I thought about Sabine, who not long after, watched three girls (also about twelve years-old) sitting on a bench. She marched away from where she was sitting with me, leaned against the bench and folded her arms. Then she turned around and climbed onto the bench and sat next to the girls, as if she was one of them and with the most satisfied look I've ever seen on her face. She folded her arms again, swung her legs back and forth and smiled a deliciously huge smile.
I tried to retrieve her and she refused. It scared the hell out of me. I may never take her to a mall ever again. Even if it is hot and there's a pop-up water fountain. Because I want the unselfconsciousness that she still has to last forever. I don't want to watch her collect bruises on her ego and on her heart. Even though I most definitely will. Because bump-filled life has many rocky parts that will make her even more beautiful than she already is.
|Image via Observando|