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Notes from Atlanta

We landed in Atlanta yesterday, after a long, but actually kind of pleasant, flight. I held back tears saying goodbye to Veronica at the airport in Los Angeles, nuzzling into her while she sat strapped into her car seat. I whispered to her, “I love you more than anything in the whole world.” And again, she pushed me back and said, “But you love Jules too, right?” I smiled at her, tears in the corners of my eyes, and nodded. And then I watched as she and Greg drove off, before turning back to my little traveling pal.

Juliette was smiling up at me with her bright, little eyes, and later on the plane as she slept in my arms and I stared out the window, I had the thought, I am more myself than I have ever been, since becoming a mother. It really just occurred to me in this profound way, that I feel more myself than I’ve ever felt, and it’s because of them. But it’s also not that I wasn’t me before I became a mama. I’m still the same me, but I feel like motherhood has served to kind boost me into a three-dimensional me. Whereas I might have been the same Claire, I’m just oh-so more her now, in all the best ways, I think. Does that make sense?

Anyway, my half-brother and his fiancee were at the airport waiting for us when we arrived and now I sit in their comfortable home in Virginia Highlands, tapping this out while they make breakfast, and waiting for one of my childhood best friends to show up.

Oh, and also admiring this write-up about Rules in the Sunday Book section of the Atlanta Journal Constitution. This is actually my very first newspaper write-up and I’m so thrilled that it’s the paper I grew up watching my parents read every weekend. You can read the whole article here. 

If you’re in the Atlanta area, I’d love to see you on Tuesday night at the Georgia Center for the Book, where I’ll be reading and signing. More details here.



  1. Enjoy your visit to your one-time home town! xoxo

    Comment by Ron Stempkowski on January 6, 2013 at 9:55 am

  2. Love the serendipity- i feel we become more me; i finally owned myself in my 50s, 60s and more; blessings and enjoy

    Comment by Esther Bradley-DeTally on January 6, 2013 at 11:11 am

  3. I totally get the “feel more me” feeling. My kids have enriched my life more than I could have ever imagined. They are definitely days when I am in awe of what I did to deserve them. I love that you have that feeling too and are able to hold onto it with both hands in your quiet moments.

    Have a great trip! Just remember, Veronica is home feeling very proud of her mama for all of her accomplishment and will be waiting for you with her sweet little face at the end of your trip. Enjoy your Juliette time alone for I’m sure you’ll look back on it with longing. :)


    Comment by Hallie Sawyer on January 6, 2013 at 3:27 pm

  4. I feel the exact same way RE: becoming a mama – thank you for putting words to what I’m feeling in my heart.

    Comment by Sara on January 6, 2013 at 4:09 pm

  5. As a mom of two myself, I understand what you are saying when you tell Veronica you love her more than anything else in the world. But when she asks if you love Juliette too, it’s because she understands that they are both your daughters and therefore equal. If you tell her you love her more today, she worries that you may feel like you love Juliette more at another time. It makes her a little insecure. Just a thought. In my family we always said, you are my favorite oldest (or youngest) daughter! It always made us laugh and we all felt loved. I love all of your writings!

    Comment by Debra L. on January 7, 2013 at 7:33 pm

  6. It was so great seeing you on Sunday! Jules is the most precious little baby girl. I hope to see you again soon. Have a safe trip!

    Comment by Tonia on January 8, 2013 at 5:56 am

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