Monday, August 15, 2011

On loving & letting go


My 18 year old daughter informs me recently that she is going on a random road trip, at night, with her friend, to the border of Victoria. A five hour drive. Just for fun. That they will be sleeping in the car, listening to music, getting away from it all, a real adventure.

I stare blankly. Wanting to say…DON”T GO!



In my head I’m seeing massive speeding trucks, slippery dark roads, scary nameless predatory men, the vast, empty beyond and two young girls hurtling through the darkness. Instead I tell her she is sitting with a woman who once was 18 too & hitchhiked to Sydney with her boyfriend, at night, on a whim.

I also tell her to be careful, to please call me, text, tell me you are ok. And I find myself thinking that such a big part of loving seems to be about letting go.

Our little guinea pig, who has been with us for almost five years, turned up her little toes this week. I buried her in the garden beneath the camellia's. There were prayers and thoughts and memories to share as we remembered how she her life had been woven into ours. All the birthdays that passed, the milestones, the summers. And of course the little squeaky sounds she made. Now she is resting peacefully after a happy retirement in the sunny front yard. Fed on tasty vegie scraps, talked to and patted, & loved. We were right there with her till the end.

My son told me recently of something that happened at school. Not to tell anyone else, to keep it to myself. And he’s sad and brave and nine years old. While he tells me how he felt - how he feels, I'm getting teary & sad too, but I can see that he is strong. And already moving on.


My 11 year old is having some friendship struggles, some issues with self esteem. She is growing up and I can see her changing every day. I try to support her, to guide her and sometimes it’s hard. I wonder how to help her through this phase. She is not a little girl anymore but she’s not a teenager either. At times she is confused, unsure. I wonder what is ahead of her, what joys, what pain.  Her blue eyes will see a whole lifetime of challenges and relationships; I wish for her everything & more. I hope she finds many adventures, fulfilment, acceptance, much colour & fun, her own life, & of course, love.

It’s three years next month since the death of my friend's seven year old son. His beautiful and heartbreaking funeral is forever etched in my mind. The pain of his loss, the tattoo of his name, in his Grade One hand writing, on her arm, the memories and living with it all…

and living with the knowledge that I have my kids, that life is unfair.




My baby is a big girl now. She can almost read, she can run off to school without looking back, she running into a new world while I wave goodbye.

And she wakes me this morning with  a huge hug and the rushed words, “Mummy I cried for you last night, when you were gone, because I just love you so much” Her dear little soft face, her cuddly six year old body snuggled next to mine, I’d love to capture this moment in a bottle, and keep it forever.


And then there’s me. Trying to find some space in my life, wondering where it will lead me. Wondering how do I fit my own dreams and me, into our family. I’m weighing things up, thinking about opportunites, asking for help,  floating, not cleaning the house enough and trying to juggle it all. I’m thinking of my children & Mark but I’m also thinking about me. I guess this year is a weird one for me, nothing is quite clear and maybe that’s ok for now.


What’s happening with you lately? Are you pondering your own life?
Whatever you are up to I hope you are enjoying some sunshine and of course, much love. 

See you soon sweet friends xo

14 comments:

Jane said...

Touching, lovely post! Such a blessing, and such a risk, being a mother.

teddybearswednesday said...

Oh Beck what a wonderful moving, special and amazing post. SO much sadness, love, wisdom and specialness all mixed up in there. Learning to let go and adapt to change isn't easy. Despite the sadness I hear in your tone, i hear strength and think you are doing it beautifully. I struggle with change myself, and Im not even a mother.Please give each one of your gorgeous Kids a hug for me.
And yes I'm doing lots of pondering of the same sort but a bit different too.
big love to you xoxo
PS if you ever need to talk....

ArtMind said...

Beautiful post! It's so hard to let go...
Hopefully you'll find your balance & all will fall in place. It's good to reflect on things, it makes it all more worth while & valuable.

Sue said...

You wrote a lovely post Beck. I too would be thinking the same thing if my daughter was going on a road trip but yes we do have to let them do things on their own dont we. Isnt it strange to look back on your own life and then wonder what your own children will experience, and if we can shelter them from all the hurt would be wonderful, but then they wouldnt be really living would they. I hope you can take this year and discover what you would really love to do without too much pressure. xxx

hester said...

Such a moving post, Beck. Made me all teary. I love reading your beautiful wise words and hearing all the love you have for your family and friends. So sad to read of your friend's little boy. Is there a harder thing to endure on this earth than losing a child? Hope this is a wonderful year for you, Beck, and that you find some extra time for you after all your years of loving mothering.

Tania said...

Yes to all that pondering and everything else and as you seem to so easily do, you've prompted that lower lip wobble. This is a post filled with heartache and treasure and well, life stuff - and as always, I'm taking parenting notes. x

Lizzie said...

It's just so darn hard being a Mum, I know. My eldest son, who is nearly 40, has just today reached out and done a really, tiny, teeny thing that brought me to tears. He sent me a smile on facebook, not much I know but he hasn't been in touch for a couple of years! Letting go is the hardest thing we have to do as a parent but if you want to keep them you have to let them fly.....
Good luck..
Lizzie
xxx

Mrs Bok - The Bok Flock said...

Oh Beck this is such a moving post. Tears spring up at your friend's loss. I cannot imagine how awful it would be. Lots to ponder at if you slow down enough to think. Perhaps that's why so many of us fill up our lives. Your kids are growing up and you are a wonderful mother to be able to let them go.

Cath @ chunkychooky said...

It makes me feel quite anxious having to let go and that one day my little 4 year old will be going on car trips with her friends, driving at night and all...... i knwo I will struggle with this.

Vic said...

I read this the other day when you posted it but I was on my ipod & couldn't respond properly; and now I see that everything has pretty much been said. ;)

SUCH a gorgeous post Beck, it made my heart hurt a little but it also made me smile... wow. xx

Jemm said...

Oh, dear me. My girls are 12 (13 in October) and 10. I'm feeling much of what you're feeling right now too. They each started at different schools this year. They move up to Junior High and Middle School and switch buildings. It's 20 miles from our house (we're so rural). It's just changing so fast and I don't have a cuddly 6 six year old anymore. ((big sigh)) Hugs to you because I am trying too to "find" me in our family too. I applied for a substitute teaching license but it takes 6-8 weeks to receive it and then the schools would have to approve me. We need the money and I need "something" else for me. Ho hum.

mel @ loved said...

Beck, this is such a moving post, I can relate to so much of what you have written. Your kids are very lucky to have you as their Mum, if only we had a handbook on parenting. Fortunately I am able to take some very useful tips and advice from loving, sensible level headed mumma such as you!xx

Reading about Charlotte, I remember telling my Mum that I was heading off to Peaches & Cream Music Festival with all my friends at 17..Oh my God, she must have been holding her breath the whole time I was gone!...and rightly so, 17!!

Posie Patchwork said...

I hear you Beck, it's FULL on & the best we can do for our children is provide them with the skills & ability to make good choices, as they head out the door to primary schoo . . . Uni . . . car trips, OMG, i'd be freaking out, actually i think my husband would follow them?? Argh, it's a whole big deal letting go. Tweens are OK in our family as the eldest is only 12 in year 7, i think my 4th will struggle as it will seem like such a long way from being a teen when he's 8 or 9. Love Posie

deux chiens et un garcon said...

Such brave little ones you have with you.

Peace and love to you

jill
xxx