This day next week my youngest will turn sixteen. As I ponder where the years have gone I was reminded of this post I wrote a few years ago.
When the last door closes.
Last night was a night like any other. There was no sign. No warning.
We said ‘Goodnight’ and off she went, with the usual kiss and a hug.
My twelve year old baby, now as tall as myself.
I sat a while longer enjoying the peace, and a glass of wine. Eventually I called it a day, and climbed the stairs. And there it was, as I reached the landing…
The closed door.
I’m sure reading this you may be puzzled as to what you missed. What’s was wrong with a closed bedroom door?
Please let me explain.
When they were young babies I tiptoed in, to gaze just once more on that tiny being. To experience once more before I slept, that skip of my heart, as I leaned forward, kissed their forehead, inhaled their baby smell and fell in love all over again.
There were nights I opened those doors, holding my breath to hear that they were breathing. There were nights I opened those door many times to a screaming child refusing to sleep.
There were nights I opened those doors to be met by a child lying wide awake.
Upset after a bad dream, or fretting with a childhood worry which a hug and a snuggle gladly given, seemed to cure.
The years have rolled by and one by one the doors have closed, until there was just one left.
I suppose if I am honest I had seen it coming. The bedroom toys were gone,
a good night story no longer wanted and the light outside the door switched off.
So perhaps now you can understand,
what that closed door meant to me?
Tonight as I climb the stairs and see that closed door, a small part of me will mourn its passing.
However as that door closes I know that a whole new world is opening up for my daughter. An exciting world of independence and freedom. A world of friends, makeup and boyfriends. The world of a teenager.
I get a grip and I give thanks.
Thanks that it was in fact she and not I who closed that door and that beyond it my child still sleeps.