Does it get any easier? I thought as the years would pass I’d get used to the changes that parenting brings. It would appear that I was wrong.
It’s that time of year when one of my clann decides to flap their wings and move away for the Summer. Tonight as I type I hear the clock tick loudly, our time together ever shorter. I’ve thoroughly enjoyed, for a few days, having my four children home, even if, as yer man said, “the house is very full.”
But this is our last night all together. When I post this tomorrow she’ll be gone.
And so, twenty four hours have now past and we’ve said our goodbyes. I tried my best but tears seem to come easy to me. Returning home without her I was reminded of a post I wrote a few years ago when my eldest left home.
Today my eldest, my firstborn left the nest. There is silence about her going as I come to terms with the empty space she has left.
Twenty one years ago I began to incubate the egg that was she. I was filled with great joy, wonder, fear, and love.
When she entered our nest,
we felt so complete. Our nest warmed by her presence.
Those early years of mothering were the best and worst years of my life. The love I felt was overwhelming. Frustration and exhaustion came in equal measure. As she grew so too did our wonder…
Was there ever a child as clever?
All too soon I was expected to begin to push her out. Everyone was going to playschool.
I held on as long as I could, but for both of us it was time.
She walked away and I was left behind.
But all did not go smoothly. “Separation anxiety” was what they called it. She was missing me, was what I called it. I realised I was holding her too tight, it was time to help her let go.
So with a breaking heart I gently pushed and she was gone.
That push was, for me, the beginning of the end. For my little bird it was the start of everything. What transformations occurred within a few short years. In no time at all,
she was taking up more space in our nest than I was. A beautiful young lady filling every room with personality, sunshine and perfume.
These were the days where she tested me most. Yet these were also the days that brought us even closer.
All too fast my little bird grew up.
As she did, it became clear for her the nest was getting small. The sights and sounds of far away places were luring her away.
It was only a matter of time.
I looked on helplessly as we watched her dreaming. A sickness and dread inside my head.
Waiting for the announcement, as a part of me knew my job was done.
She was ready.
So the announcement finally came, and what seemed like moments after telling us the destination of her dreams, she spread her wings.
And she was gone.
Her room is now empty, her perfume lingering on awhile. And just like many mothers before me, I am left in my empty nest.
So tonight as I write this I feel two of those emotions strongly. One is obviously love. And the other grief.
Together I think they perfectly sum up the journey that is parenthood.
And especially for my little bird who left tonight,
“Wear your ruby shoes, when you’re far away, so you’ll always stay home in your heart.” xxx