The Healing Horse, Ch. 39, Scene 2: Mama Reacts

photo of green salad

Scene 2 continues young Karen’s pursuit of a driver’s license as she discusses what it means with Mama.

[Image by Shijan Kaakkara, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons]

Scene 2: Mama Reacts

The bus stopped in front of Karen’s house, and she easily hopped down the steps to the ground while remembering how difficult this used to be. She thought about the two sheets of paper tucked into her binder with the rest of her school stuff. Somehow, she would find a way to discuss the subject with Mama.

After she visited Pegasus, she walked back home and helped prepare dinner.

Mama broiled chicken and baked potatoes to go with Karen’s green salad. Together, they carried the food to the table and sat down. It smelled wonderful.

Karen swallowed a bite of food, then said, “Mama, something happened at school today that I’d like to discuss with you—a genuine opportunity presented itself for me to become more independent.”

“That’s wonderful, my girl,” Mama replied. “How do you want to become more independent?”

At that moment, Karen remembered, I can’t be afraid of talking to my own Mama for her consent to learn how to drive. I don’t have time to beat around the bush. I just have to say it.

Karen paused. She had discovered the opportunity.

“Well, Krana Layala?” Mama asked.

Karen’s eyes lingered. She looked down before giving more detail.

“Well, Mama, I think I could do more for myself and not be such a burden for you to take care of.”

Karen got shy again and crossed her arms. She felt defensive about this conversation. It was most difficult, but she did it with a spirit as if she were facing danger. She never ever told Mama these feelings before.

“Oh, honey. You have never been a duty or a burden to me! Where did you get that from?”

“Well, I know how much energy you put forth. Every day you wake up early to feed me, tie my shoes, zip up my dresses, do my pretty ponytails, wash and starch my clothes, and take me to and from dance, swim, and tutoring sessions. That’s how you show me how much you love me! You have even returned to school to bring me homework assignments when I forgot them.”

Mama Katie smiled. “What did grandma put me here on earth for?”

Karen beamed. “What”

“You are my light and joy. What you were named after, Krana Layala.” Mama said.

“Do you really mean that?” Kitten asked.

“I don’t say things I don’t mean, honey. I love you with all my heart. You should know your mama by now.” Mama smiled wisely.

Karen felt relieved. Her sense of assuredness came back in full force. “I’m sixteen, Mama, and I’d like to learn how to drive. Would that be all right with you?

Mama took a deep breath.

“That’s my Krana Layala. That’s my independent girl. This will not be easy. I remember when Grandpa taught me to drive, so I didn’t have to ride the bus with diaper bags and satchels in one hand and you in the other. Nothing you have done has ever been easy. But I am so proud of you and your determination to conquer all, including getting this license. After you get your driver’s license, you can take your dear old Mama to Ohrbach’s on a shopping spree.”

They both broke out giggling.

Karen watched as her mother’s eyes crinkled with delight. Mama looked up, directly into Karen’s eyes.

“My precious Krana Layala, I’ve always known the day would come, and honestly, the thought scared me. But I also knew that I would have to let you spread your wings, grow up, and follow your own dreams. I will not stand in your way anymore, my darling. That isn’t fair to either of us. I learned my lesson long ago when you firmly spoke up to me about preparing dinner like an equal. You showed me how you put your attention and mind into your actions.”

Sharing in this way connected and bonded them more deeply than ever before. They enfolded each other in their arms and kissed and held their embrace with new praise for and celebration of each other.

Original text ©2023 by Karen Lynn-Chlup. All rights reserved.


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