Thursday, April 03, 2008

A Flaw in the Blood

Girls are the most vicious creatures on the face of the earth. Boy bullies may pound you into the ground, but they will at least leave your soul intact. Both of my daughters are suffering at the hands of their friends, and it makes me ache deep inside. Last spring, Molly had some trouble with a girl who had been her longtime friend. The girl ended up bringing her mom into the fight (because she works at the school), and Molly was nearly suspended because of the woman's interference. Molly and her friend made up, but their friendship this past year has been rocky. Last Friday, there was a dance at the high school. Molly went with this friend, plus a third girl. The friend had been crushing on a boy for awhile. She never spoke to him or pursued him, just thought he was cute. The boy, Shawn, started flirting with Molly at the dance. Molly felt the sparks fly between them and started flirting back. The friend ran from the dance in tears. Molly and Shawn spent time rollerblading and watching movies this weekend which resulted in a phone call from the friend (and the third girl) cussing Molly out, calling her a backstabber and reducing her to tears. Since the last incident, my words of advice to Molly are: Friends rejoice when you rejoice and mourn when you mourn. These girls are not your friends.

Mia has been acting out for the last couple of weeks at home. She's been aggressive and angry. She bursts into tears at the slightest provocation, and yelled I hate you! at me twice. I thought a little boy's teasing on the bus was the cause of it, until I discovered this week that her best friend since the first day of school has been treating her like a yo-yo. The girl gets mad and says I hate you, you're not my friend anymore. The next day, she'll ask Mia to be her friend again. I try to talk to Mia about what being a good friend is, but all she wants is for this girl to like her every day.

This is not how I want my girls to grow up. I want them to be strong and secure in who they are and not reliant upon the opinion of their frenemies. I lived my life in those chains for far too long. I want more for them.

A Flaw in the Blood by Stephanie Barron is a thrilling Victorian mystery. Irish barrister, Patrick Fitzgerald, and his ward Dr. Georgiana Armistead are on the run for their lives after the death of the Prince Consort, Albert. They are hunted throughout England and on the Continent by German Wolfgang van Stuhlen, but they have no idea who wants them dead or why. Much of the story is built on surprises in the plot, and I don't want to give too much away. Barron alternates chapters between Fitzgerald and Queen Victoria. Writing as the queen is a fabulous conceit, and Barron pulls it off with aplomb. Her fictional view into the queen's mind is delicious and frightening. The plot builds slowly, but as the threads come together, they tighten the plot making it a true masterpiece. Barron takes little known bits of history and re-imagines them with gleeful malice. I've always thought of Queen Victoria as rather boring and a bit stodgy, after this I'm off to read a biography. I look forward to Barron writing more books with this bent.

I went back to the doctor on Monday. I had a Vitamin D deficiency which results in bone and muscle pain. While that's not the source of all of my pain, it may be why I've felt so miserable lately. I'm on a supplement now and have a lot more energy. He also took me back off of the Meloxicam, it wasn't working, and put me back on ibuprofen, but prescription strength. I've been pretty busy all week, even though the pain has been bad. Tomorrow I visit the pain management specialist for the first time. I'll let you know how it goes.

Remember to sign up to win a copy of Tricia Goyer's Generation NeXt Marriage by dropping me an email at clockstein at before midnight on Saturday.


Anonymous said...

I once read in a book that any friend can comfort you when you are sad...because a lot of people are just glad that they aren't in your situation...but a true friend rejoices when you rejoice and that is sometimes the truest measure of friendship...because it goes against our human instinct. A lot of times if someone has something that we want...we tend to be jealous. I thought there was a lot of truth in these thoughts and am working on trying to rejoice with my friends!