Worthy, Nagging Voices

Leah is visiting Alyssa, who’s next to her on the couch, nursing Sarah Naomi.

“So, how’s life with Genevieve?”

“You know that nagging little voice in the back of your head that questions every decision you’ve ever made?”

“Yes.”

“Well, that’s Genevieve now. Every time we talk about my past she raises questions about why I made the decisions I did.”

“She just wants to get to know you better.”

“I understand that, but you know me. I’ve never been one to second guess myself.”

“No. You haven’t. Is that changing?”

“Not really. The truth is, when I explain myself, my decisions make more sense than at the time I made them. It’s just odd having to defend choices I made that can’t be altered now.”

“You know what that sounds like? Like being a parent.”

“Is that what you’re experiencing with the baby?”

“Not questions from her, obviously. But I do find myself going over things Mama said or did when I was little. A lot of it is making more sense now.” She places her hand on Leah’s. “Speaking of which, there’s something I’ve been meaning to tell you.”

“You’re not having migraines, are you.”

“No. It’s something positive. I’ve been attending Temple again and have decided to have my Bat Mitzvah.”

“That’s great. What brought this on?”

“It’s one of those nagging voices you talked about. When Mama died, I lost my connection to my faith and even though I went to church with Sandy and Mandy, it wasn’t the same. Now that I’m a mother, I want to feel more grounded.”

“I will help in whatever way you think I can.”

“I’ll let you know. Listen, Genni has been studying with me.”

“That’s why she’s been visiting you?”

“It has.”

“I wonder why she didn’t say anything.”

“Maybe she wasn’t sure how you’d react.”

“Why would my reaction concern her? She’s free to do whatever she wants. I told her that.”

“I get the sense she still seeks your approval. Of course, she’d never say anything. Sound familiar?”

“This is a totally different situation.”

“Genni’s very independent. I think it’s difficult for her to admit she wants to impress you. Just don’t make the same assumptions with her that Daddy did with you.”

“Is that what you think I’m doing?”

“You became an instant parent, even if you don’t see it that way. Certain instincts are probably kicking in. It’s okay to open up to her.”

“Okay. I’ll do what I can.”

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