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 😀
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?
Bodies 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.