Friday, August 14, 2015

Sarah Time

"When I'm talking to my friends," my daughter said, "And I say, 'Sarah,' they say, 'Which Sarah--Sarah the horse or Sarah the priestess?'"

I love several things about that sentence:

1. That I named my horse after my friend. Because, let's face it, the likelihood of naming a daughter after her was getting extremely small,  and yet, what a pleasure to say her name every day.

2. Also, the horse named Sarah is fabulous.

3. That Sarah-my-friend is, in fact, a priestess--an ordained Episcopalian priest, no less, not one of those odd wiccan types. She doesn't usually go by priestess, but, you know, I think she should. It sounds badass.

4. Especially this: that when my daughter says 'Sarah,' her friends know that one of the options is Sarah-the-priestess, despite the fact that my daughter hasn't seen Sarah-the-priestess since her ordination, in January 2010.

Sarah-the-priestess is one of my childhood best friends. She's trilingual, with degrees from Yale and Vanderbilt as well as her seminary. She's a nun living in an semi-enclosed community with a monastic devotion to daily prayer. She's also my daughter's godmother. In Haiti, where Sarah lived for several years, the position of godmother is so important that the word for it is "co-mere," as in "co-mother." Sarah has mothered my daughter very well from afar, with lots of letters and postcards, emails, Facebook postings, and love.

For the past three days Sarah and I have been taking a watercolor class together, in Linville where our mountain house is. It's been tremendously fun--more on that later--but, since my daughter already started high school and my husband and son were out of town, we ended up commuting back and forth. We'd get home late, and I'd cook dinner. I felt exhausted by the end of all three days--a combination of intense concentration during the class, three hours of driving, and no yoga--but then we'd hang out in the kitchen, Sarah, my daughter, and me. Sarah and I would sip some wine. Sarah would take photo essays of my recipes, for her blog. My daughter would tell us all about her school day, and about the horses, which she took care of in my absence, and other things, and then we'd eat dinner at the table by candlelight.

Twice when I went up to bed my daughter and her godmother stayed up talking, cozily. Whenever I can swipe a bit of Sarah's summer vacation, I take it. But she was ordained and then she was in Haiti, and then spent all last summer seeing her mother through a terrible accident--I went to see Sarah then--at any rate, I don't get this opportunity as often as I'd like, or as often as my daughter would like. We're reveling in it, in every precious moment.