Many Goodly Creatures Are There Here

She has an alter ego. Actually, she has several.

She fluttered around the house a few days ago, wrapped in pink and purple scarves and various fashion tidbits never meant to co-exist. She had removed her splints (the molded plastic braces that help her walk and provide support to her ankles) and proceeded to skip across the floor. One of her scarves was dragging dangerously close to her feet so I advised caution.

“Jordan, you shouldn’t be dancing without your splints. You might trip.”

She cast her eyes down, lifted her chin, cocked her head and elevated her voice to a very high, sweetened pitch.

“I’m not Jordan. I’m Princess Arroya.”

She means to say Aurora, Sleeping Beauty, but she never quite gets it right. She continues to skip and dance, ignoring my advice. It is only one of her personalities.

She was almost named Miranda – Miranda Ariel to be precise – but then we thought better of it. A bit too Disneyesque. But I often think it’s who she is inside. She could easily play Shakespeare’s castaway heroine doting dramatically on the young Ferdinand. She could also play another Miranda – the diabolical Miranda Priestly of the current feature film __The Devil Wears Prada__. When Jeanette and I saw the movie last week we pinched one another during certain scenes. “That’s so Jordan,” we’d whisper as we watched Meryl Streep manipulate, intimidate and stylishly command the screen. It’s all a part of her charm, her mystique, her presence. Half the time she’s the giggling girl with wild eyes and rapid-fire stories. The other half is a coin toss.

She looks fabulous (capital F). She’s grown a bit, proudly catching up to her mother’s chin, and she’s put on some much-needed weight. Her cheeks blush forth on her slightly tanned and freckled skin. The eyes are alive again, always searching, always tempting; a virbrant window into whichever character she chooses to reveal. The characters surface through her imaginative repartee.

Last week, during the unrelenting heat wave, Jordan was having trouble getting to sleep. It was just too hot. Jeanette suggested that she sleep in her skivvies. To which Jordan replied, “I’m not that kind of girl.”

This afternoon I found her undressing at three. I asked what she was doing. Her answer: “I’m just going to ‘hang’ in my pajamas.”

When we walked by the Tiffany store in Old Town Pasadena she advised me, “ you know what I always say, Dad. If it’s not from Tiffany, send it back.”

And then there’s my favorite story. During physical therapy a couple of months ago her therapists devised a game to keep her motivated. The male therapist pretended to be a devilish villain who had poisoned the female therapist. The female therapist lay down on the ground pretending to be very sick. Everyone cheered Jordan to walk to her and deliver the magic elixir that would help her awake. Jordan gave it a good go, struggling to walk half the distance. But then she tired out and turned around. Jeanette and the team called out, “keep going Jordan, she needs the potion. You can save her!” To which Jordan replied (without even turning to look back) “Bye. I’ll miss you.”

That’s my girl … all of ’em.