Thursday, May 19, 2011

The Middle Place



It was 2:00 a.m. and as I lay there wondering if I had restless-leg syndrome the idea to finally buckle and get out of bed, maybe do something else, popped into my head. I had been reading a first novel by journalist, Kelly Corrigan, and thought what better way to put myself to sleep than reading about that "middle place" most of us reach at some point in our lives?

That middle place between being a mother and wife and being the daughter. The cherished and spoiled daughter who knows the person she loves so dearly is either going to die, or is dying, and that will leave her the one in charge without benefit of being able to also lean into the one man in her life that will always be there for her. Do men realize the importance of that role? Do they have any idea how larger than life they will always be to their little girls - no matter how old they are?

For me it was 1987 and I was pregnant with my youngest. A difficult pregnancy made all the harder (and all the sweeter), because my dearly loved father was succumbing to all of those cigarettes he had smoked and was dying of emphysema. It would be a beautiful year in so many ways. Time to have him all to myself. A man that was larger than life to many people, and especially to me - his cherished and spoiled daughter. A time when I realized that there truly was a God; because without hanging on to that tiny, angelic baby - there was no way I could let go of my father.

Kelly Corrigan weaves this bitter sweet time in her life with style and wit. Without giving away the plot, I found this book very readable. Funny, articulate, witty, soulful. This book would appeal to all women in that middle place, and some men who should read it just to know how special they are to their daughters.

10 comments:

California Girl said...

Sounds like a must read for women of a certain age. I have so many must reads now. If you can believe it, I'm just starting "The Golden Notebook". Should have read it in college and it's 600+ pgs long. sigh.

Midlife Jobhunter said...

"some men who should read it just to know how special they are to their daughter"

I hope my dad knew how special he was to me. Nancy, my book club read this book a couple months ago. I missed the discussion due to vacation. I enjoyed it. And - just noticed the comment from California Girl. I have The Golden Notebook on my shelf as well.

Brian Miller said...

nice. may get this for my wife...her mom passed a few years ago and it continues to be hard at times.

trish said...

Another book for my list! This one sounds good.

Natalie said...

You should be sleepless more often! Very nice post. :)

GYPSYWOMAN said...

sounds like a lovely book - when i'm unable to sleep i have to get up and "do" something - don't know why reading is not the first thing i try during those times - and sometimes my most creative moments are in the middle of the night -

Teresa - in the Middle Side of Life said...

I have RLS and take medicine every night. I can tell if I don't... the darn things have a mind of their own.

The book sounds interesting. I might have to see if I can download it to my Nook.

injaynesworld said...

"A time when I realized that there truly was a God; because without hanging on to that tiny, angelic baby - there was no way I could let go of my father."

That's really beautiful, Nancy. I envy you. I had no relationship with my father.

The Good Cook said...

Thanks for the book recommendation. Now about those restless legs.
Place an unwrapped bar of soap at the foot of your bed, under the fitted sheet.
Don't ask me how this works but it does. I'm serious. My dad, my sister, my niece and I all have restless leg syndrome and the soap bar works for all of us.

Give it a try and let me know if it works for you.

Angella Lister said...

lovely, nancy. thank you.