Girl, age 11 to 14
An umbrella is a stupid thing to get in a fight with your mom over. But she wanted me to get the same ruffled pink umbrella I’ve had since I was three. I don’t feel like a ruffled pink umbrella kind of person anymore, you know? I wanted this art print umbrella I’d found at the museum gift shop. It was the kind of umbrella that made me wish for rainy days. It was perfect, but my mom said ‘no.’ She didn’t just say ‘no;’ she actually told me the pink one matched my style better. Like I have no idea what my style is. Like that’s something she can decide for me. And while I stood there trying to explain how completely wrong she was, she took one of the stupid pink umbrellas up to the counter. That’s when I lost it. Right there in the store. I came this close to telling her I’d broken the old umbrella, just so I wouldn’t have to be seen with it anymore. Next thing you know she’s stomping out the door telling me I could spend the year with wet hair, because she wasn’t buying me anything if I was ‘going to behave like this.’ I’ve never been so relieved in my life. And she was wrong; I won’t have wet hair all year, because Grandma drove me back to the museum gift shop. When it rains, I’ll be out dancing it, with an umbrella that’s all me.