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(February 2, 1931)

Quotations

  • ''My mom says I'm her sugarplum.
    My mom says I'm her lamb.
    My mom says I'm completely perfect
    Just the way I am.
    My mom says I'm a super-special wonderful terrific little guy.
    My mom just had another baby.
    Why?''
    Judith Viorst (20th century), U.S. author and poet. If I Were in Charge of the World and Other Worries (1981).
    67 person liked.
    12 person did not like.
  • ''But it's hard to be hip over thirty
    When everyone else is nineteen,
    When the last dance we learned was the Lindy,
    And the last we heard, girls who looked like Barbra Streisand
    Were trying to do something about it.''
    Judith Viorst (b. 1935), U.S. poet, journalist. "It's Hard to Be Hip Over Thirty," in It's Hard to Be Hip Over Thirty and Other Tragedies of Married Life (1968).
  • ''Craving that old sweet oneness yet dreading engulfment, wishing to be our mother's and yet be our own, we stormily swing from mood to mood, advancing and retreating—the quintessential model of two-mindedness.''
    Judith Viorst (20th century), U.S. author and poet. Necessary Loses, ch. 3 (1986).
  • ''The need to become a separate self is as urgent as the yearning to merge forever. And as long as we, not our mother, initiate parting, and as long as our mother remains reliably there, it seems possible to risk, and even to revel in, standing alone.''
    Judith Viorst (20th century), U.S. author and poet. Necessary Loses, ch. 3 (1986).
  • ''Just as children, step by step, must separate from their parents, we will have to separate from them. And we will probably suffer...from some degree of separation anxiety: because separation ends sweet symbiosis. Because separation reduces our power and control. Because separation makes us feel less needed, less important. And because separation exposes our children to danger.''
    Judith Viorst (20th century), U.S. novelist and poet. Necessary Losses, ch. 14 (1986).
  • ''Our ego ideal is precious to us because it repairs a loss of our earlier childhood, the loss of our image of self as perfect and whole, the loss of a major portion of our infantile, limitless, ain't-I-wonderful narcissism which we had to give up in the face of compelling reality. Modified and reshaped into ethical goals and moral standards and a vision of what at our finest we might be, our dream of perfection lives on—our lost narcissism lives on—in our ego ideal.''
    Judith Viorst (20th century), U.S. novelist and poet. Necessary Losses, ch. 9 (1986).
  • ''Growing up means letting go of the dearest megalomaniacal dreams of our childhood. Growing up means knowing they can't be fulfilled. Growing up means gaining the wisdom and skills to get what we want within the limitations imposed by reality—a reality which consists of diminished powers, restricted freedoms and, with the people we love, imperfect connections.''
    Judith Viorst (20th century), U.S. novelist and poet. Necessary Losses, ch. 11 (1986).
  • ''Somewhere slightly before or after the close of our second decade, we reach a momentous milestone—childhood's end. We have left a safe place and can't go home again. We have moved into a world where life isn't fair, where life is rarely what it should be.''
    Judith Viorst (20th century), U.S. novelist and poet. Necessary Losses, ch. 10 (1986).
  • ''Adolescence involves our nutty-desperate-ecstatic-rash psychological efforts to come to terms with new bodies and outrageous urges.''
    Judith Viorst (20th century), U.S. novelist and poet. Necessary Losses, ch. 10 (1986).
  • ''Our mother gives us our earliest lessons in love—and its partner, hate. Our father—our "second other"Melaborates on them. Offering us an alternative to the mother-baby relationship . . . presenting a masculine model which can supplement and contrast with the feminine. And providing us with further and perhaps quite different meanings of lovable and loving and being loved.''
    Judith Viorst (20th century), U.S. novelist and poet. Necessary Losses, ch. 5 (1986).

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Learning

I'm learning to say thank you.
And I'm learning to say please.
And I'm learning to use Kleenex,
Not my sweater, when I sneeze.
And I'm learning not to dribble.
And I'm learning not to slurp.
And I'm learning (though it sometimes really hurts me)
Not to burp.
And I'm learning to chew softer

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