I recently saw a show where a mother forgave the drunk driver who killed her daughter.
And as if that weren’t hard ENOUGH to imagine, forgiveness was only the tip of this enlightened iceberg.
She has this guy over for Sunday dinners. They exchange gifts at Christmas (nothing of the Jack Daniels variety, one presumes). She calls him to gossip about the neighbors. “He’s as special to me as if he were my own son,” she said on this talk show, as she gently took his hand and the audience (including me) sobbed into our Pop Tarts.
This is a level of compassion and absolution that is both stunning and admirable. And it’s one that I, too, aspire to achieve.
I guess I say “aspire to” because I know that if I were in her shoes, I would not want this man to spend his life in prison, either. But what I might want is for him to spend his life attempting to absolve his wrongdoing by replacing the daughter I lost.
Actually, physically replacing her.
Oh, sure, it might feel a tad awkward at first, having a 40-year-old sitting at the breakfast table wearing a Catholic school girl’s outfit. Sure, it might be hard trying to find Mary Janes in size 13. Discipline could be a challenge when trying to take a 160-pound man over your knee for a spanking – not to mention the creepy look of anticipation on his face.
I suppose it could get weird around the time the daughter would have hit puberty and you have to have that “special talk”. And braiding her hair might lose something when the wig keeps coming off his head.
But imagine the torture of a grown man having to pretend to be excited about The Vampire Diaries and Justin Bieber and auditioning lip gloss. Picture the deliciously excruciating moment when he has to use his first tampon. Consider the gratification of seeing your little girl all dressed up in the ugliest f***ing prom dress you can lay your hands on. (“If a wrist corsage was good enough for me, young lady, it’s good enough for YOU.”)
Yeah, I guess I’m not as enlightened as I’d like to be.
But come on, that would be FUN.