What is important to know is that Strudel speaks very quickly and precisely. One time at her summer camp, one of the counselors asked Franny where her sister was from due to her “accent.”

“What is that story called, the children in the box-cart?” Strudel said.

The Boxcar Children?” I said.

“No, that is not right, it is about children in a box-cart, what is that called?”


“I don’t think so.” She went back to playing in a non-greasy pizza box that she kidnapped from last night’s dinner. “OHH we are the pizza box children!”


A Dream.

“I had a dream last night,” Strudel said.

“I know, you were crying a lot this morning,” I said. A wee bed invader shifted me out at 4:30 after I made the mistake of using the bathroom.

“Can I tell you?”


“Can it be more than two sentences?” There is a rule in our house that dream recitations should be limited to two-sentence summaries so breakfast does not turn into the Buffy show.

Strudel took a deep breath.

“Last night I dreamt that you took me and my sister somewhere and it was BAD and then you stepped on a place where cannonballs go and you exploded yourself. You ended your life! And you said, ‘Come on girls, you too!”

“What happened then?”

“My sister and I decided not to explode ourselves so we went home and we called 9-1-1. That was the end!”

I laughed, which was a terrible mistake.

“Why are you laughing? It’s not FUNNY! You ended your life!”

“I just like the ending that you called 9-1-1. Very practical.”

“Okay. You are not going to end your life, are you, Mom?”

“Me? Nooo! I want to know you for my whole life.”


“Yes, I promise.”

7 thoughts on “Strudelday

  1. Strudel rocks. She has the deep wisdom of youth. I could get all psychologist and analyze the symbolism of her dreams, but I shall not. I will only say that she clearly loves you immensely.

  2. Why does this make me want to cry? Oh yeah, because I had a single mom dealing with lots of asshole-dad shit when I was the girls’ ages and I was always worried something would happen to my mom. I don’t know why I’m talking in the past tense, this is all still pretty real and I’m 30. So yeah, I identify with that dream and with the girls and (now, as an adult) with you. The good news is my mom and I are closer than any two other people I know. This whole thing sucks, but it will bring you even closer to the girls. They’re also lucky to have each other. Wish I’d had that. Good luck and good thoughts.

  3. I remember being that age where my subconscious made me aware of things that I had not even consciously thought about before, like the death of important people in your life. It’s scary.

    Look at me, all commenting on my own post, when I could just POST in it. Heh.

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