A Mother’s Prayer for Its Child By Tina Fey
Tina Fey Hard At Work
“First, Lord: No tattoos. May neither Chinese symbol for truth nor Winnie-
the-Pooh holding the FSU logo stain her tender haunches.
May she be Beautiful but not Damaged, for it’s the Damage that draws the
creepy soccer coach’s eye, not the Beauty.
When the Crystal Meth is offered, may she remember the parents who cut
her grapes in half And stick with Beer.
Guide her, protect her when crossing the street, stepping onto boats,
swimming in the ocean, swimming in pools, walking near pools, standing on
the subway platform, crossing 86th Street, stepping off of boats, using
mall restrooms, getting on and off escalators, driving on country roads
while arguing, leaning on large windows, walking in parking lots, riding
Ferris wheels, roller-coasters, log flumes, or anything called “Hell
Drop,” “Tower of Torture,” or “The Death Spiral Rock ‘N Zero G Roll
featuring Aerosmith,” and standing on any kind of balcony ever, anywhere,
at any age.
Lead her away from Acting but not all the way to Finance. Something where
she can make her own hours but still feel intellectually fulfilled and get
outside sometimes And not have to wear high heels. What would that be,
Lord? Architecture? Midwifery? Golf course design? I’m asking You, because
if I knew, I’d be doing it, Youdammit.
May she play the Drums to the fiery rhythm of her Own Heart with the
sinewy strength of her Own Arms, so she need Not Lie With Drummers.
Grant her a Rough Patch from twelve to seventeen.Let her draw horses and
be interested in Barbies for much too long, For childhood is short – a
Tiger Flower blooming Magenta for one day – And adulthood is long and dry-
humping in cars will wait.
O Lord, break the Internet forever, that she may be spared the misspelled
invective of her peers And the online marketing campaign for Rape Hostel
V: Girls Just Wanna Get Stabbed.
And when she one day turns on me and calls me a Bitch in front of
Hollister, Give me the strength, Lord, to yank her directly into a cab in
front of her friends, For I will not have that Shit. I will not have it.
And should she choose to be a Mother one day, be my eyes, Lord, that I
may see her, lying on a blanket on the floor at 4:50 A.M., all-at-once
exhausted, bored, and in love with the little creature whose poop is
leaking up its back. “My mother did this for me once,” she will realize as
she cleans feces off her baby’s neck. “My mother did this for me.” And the
delayed gratitude will wash over her as it does each generation and she
will make a Mental Note to call me. And she will forget. But I’ll know,
because I peeped it with Your God eyes.