She’s gone

My princess has gone, the day finally came when my little appendage was finally carved off and let go into the world and you know what? It wasn’t so hard. I think because she’s always so busy anyway it just feels at the moment like she’s at work or she’s gone off to a gig with some friends for a couple of days. Her things are still scattered around the house, I was told she had everything immediately important and I should just box up anything I come across and send down to her. Believe me from a quick sweep this afternoon I’m going to need a BIG box.

She traveled by train and I couldn’t bare to go see her off at the station and I’m pretty sure she couldn’t either so it was a blessing when my friend who was taking her and her brother (much more poignant that he got to say his goodbyes in private) wound up running late, so late that I had an anxiety attack that she would miss her train and I wasn’t fit to go anywhere anyway. We spent the first hour of her journey chatting on the phone and we agreed it was best that we didn’t have the tearful platform goodbye of the movies as we are both pretty private people (says she who bares her heart on her blog) and outward spectacles are not our thing. Privately we are the gushiest mushiest mother and daughter pairing ever but we’re sophisticated ladies in public… well OK she is I just tow the line. But we felt it was more appropriate that we didn’t leave with tears as this was a happy time not a sad time, it was positive, it was everything we’d both worked towards for years and years.

It’s crazy how their whole life flashes before you when they are leaving… I remember how when she was little she wouldn’t let anyone push her pram or even speak to her, she only had eyes for mama. She clung to me, she spent most of her time in my arms, or on my lap. She would come to me to nestle when she was tired or just in need of mummy time and she would bury herself into me face first, legs splayed around my hips and she could remain there content for hour upon hour, sleeping, listening to me sing, listening to me read. Or she would watch me intently, never blinking, not taking her eyes off my face for a second from being a new born baby, being irritated if something passed between our visages and she lost focus on her mama for a second. She watched intently and she learned. She learned to smile, to laugh, to speak, to sing, to read… she soaked me in like a little sponge, I was undoubtedly her world. It was a bond which began the moment she was born and remained as intense as that first eye to eye contact we shared, when I knew this was some precious soul I held in my arms and the enormity of the task before me dawned on me and yet there was a look in her eyes that told me that I could do it, she depended on me and she had faith in me. Even though the dependence has lessened as time has gone on, that faith has never wavered, she trusts me with her life for real. I proved myself to her and truly feel I have never let her down, I didn’t drop the ball for a second and I’m proud of that and she is testimony to that.

I made a wonderful unique person and that intent watching of me and absorbing of everything I said and more importantly did, will stand her in good stead as a young woman. She can now practice all she saw, all she helped with, all I’ve exampled to her for the past 21 years. The value of independence, the value of hard work, the virtue of self respect and honesty, personal integrity and straightforwardness in your dealings with others, the value of surrounding yourself with like minded people who are heading in your direction who will uphold you on your journey and who you in turn can uphold, who will value your contribution to their lives as much as you will value theirs. The importance of loving her brother and regarding him as the other half of a whole, the closest person there will ever be to her, even more genetically similar to her than her own children will be or I am, the first one to go to if she ever needs a kidney šŸ˜€

She knows the rewards to be had from charitable deeds, from actions and words rather than money and gifts, she knows how to care and be compassionate without allowing herself to be taken for granted… no way will anyone take her for granted she is way too feisty and opinionated. She knows how to have fun in simple ways and to take pleasure in the natural world around her, to take time to feel the beauty of a sunset, a sunrise, a starry night, a sun soaked panoramic sea view, a majestic mountain, a trickling brook or the spectacular shades of an autumn forest. She knows how to appreciate the talents of others, musical, artistic, culinary… and to value expertise as much as she admires someone willing to have a go and hashing something together. She loves literature and knows how to lose herself, remove herself from this stressful world and fall into a world created or inhabited by another and learn all there is to be learned within the pages. She’s a lady, she’s beautiful, smart and ready… ready for the world. How can I be sad that she’s gone to carve out her way knowing that she is already all of that and more?

mother-child-holding-handsBodies can be separated, souls remain intertwined, no distance can take people you genuinely love away from you, I believe that.

When we’d finished packing at last at stupid o’clock this morning, we looked at each other and we spontaneously high fived and she said “We did it mama” and our eyes locked, our smiles matched and I said “We did baby, we did it”. It was everything we needed to say. We both knew we weren’t talking about the packing.

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14 thoughts on “She’s gone”

  1. Lovely. Heartbreaking, but lovely. As to baring your soul on your blog, that doesn’t make you any less private because no-one knows who you are. Were it I, that would be a different matter; my site declaims my identity. Had to for book porpoises. šŸ™‚

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    1. Thank you and so true M-R. Although when I do my big weightloss reveal (one day) I shall be laying myself naked before the world… figuratively you understand, I’m going for weightloss not a miracle šŸ˜‰

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      1. Of course you are (and busily dissecting that unfortunate young woman !) – you’re not a halfwit ! šŸ™‚
        I reckon your dissection of Tracey does you HUGE credit already; please accept my compliments ! šŸ˜€

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  2. Beautifully written. I remember the day I left home. Also by train. About 3 hours journey ahead. The eyes welled up. Dad’s not mine. Within 24 hours I felt totally at ease in my new environment but until my mother died 25 years later I wrote and called regularly. The ties never break.

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    1. Awwww thank you for that reassurance. You’ve caused me to reminisce about my own departure to the city and think about how I felt. I was very excited and determined to have new experiences. In the 12 years I lived in the city my mother never once contacted me, engagement, marriage, child… I think I’ll stop there and write about this in a post, I can feel it leading to some healing and that’s what this blog is all about for me.

      Thanks for prompting the memories by sharing yours šŸ™‚

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  3. I haven’t traveled that road yet. I do remember each child on their first day of preschool. I fought to hold back the tears then. I can’t imagine the day my boys leave the nest. Wonderful post!

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    1. Thank you. Technology makes it easier. She’s Skyped me around her new pad and I’ve ‘met’ the housemates on Skype, she’s Facebooked photos and is tagging in where she’s visiting on Twitter. It all helps narrow the distance.

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        1. She looks very relaxed and happy… it is definitely good to see that and not just be told that. She might be able to fool me with words but I know what I see. I think the big wrench will come when she’s not there for special occasions, my first birthday without her is approaching.

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  4. A beautiful read – thanks for sharing, Michelle. And you should feel so proud that you have done such a wonderful job raising someone who sounds like an awesome young woman. And she is only a Skype, phone call or text away. Modern communication has its downsides but that is certainly one of the upsides!

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    1. Thank you. I’m smarting a bit today and am on a stand off as she was snappy with me for too much checking and I’ve retreated into a wounded sulk. She is right, I’ve been too full on making sure she’s OK but when I left home for the big city as a similar aged young lady I recall feeling so sad that my mother didn’t bother to contact me to ask how I was or to get excited for me. My dad did but she didn’t even get a sentence in at the end of his phone call or make one herself… EVER. In all the years I have lived apart from my mother she has never contacted me to see if I’m OK to date. I know how much that hurts and I didn’t want her to have that same experience but it appears I’ve been over zealous. I’ve decided to just back away and let her feel how it feels to have me not appear to care at all and maybe she will understand what I was doing and it will settle into something more normal. It’s the first time I’ve done this so it’s a learning experience for me but she was snappy with her brother too, he said he’s leaving her alone as he thinks she just doesn’t want to speak to us now she’s gone. I told him she just wants to feel independent and us on her case every five minutes is not helping with that.

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