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Sunday, July 25, 2010

Sunny & Someday

My baby, my first baby, Sunny, really more a young woman now, is just starting the process of looking at colleges and universities.  Right now, she has it narrowed down to one in-state university and one out-of-state college.  She has a while to choose yet.  She'd love to go out-of-state.  She'd love to leave home.  Go away.  From here.
You can hear it, can't you?  The sound of a mother's heart being crushed, slowly, as her first born leaves.

She loves us... dearly.  I know she does.  But away is not here, and she craves this independence and this distance and sadly, this awayness.  I think this is good.  I hope this means we, her parents, have done our job well.  My heart is still sad.
So even though in my heart she is still 2 or 6 or if I try very hard 12 years old at the very most , I help her look at colleges that are not so close to home, and not so close to my arms that are about to feel a little empty without her.   I miss her already.  I miss the woman she's becoming, and she's still here.  It doesn't make any sense.  I can't pretend it does.
I will miss her.  I will miss her singing songs at the tender age of 2, songs she made up about washing a car, songs she sings with bubbles in her hair.   I will miss her confidence when she started wearing glasses at 8, saying, "I'm so lucky I'm one of those people who looks SO good in glasses!"  I will miss the trips we started when she was 14, to the senior home to play bingo.  I will miss her doing my hair and me brushing hers.  I will miss the tears we share when a friend isn't there and the shoulder I can offer.  I will even miss holding her hair back when she's sick.
I know I have days, when there's nothing I want more than to not parent.
There are day that the kiddos are everywhere, all over me, touching, poking, tugging, 12 hands, 12 feet, 60 fingers, 60 toes, again and again and again...
There are days that the only thing I want is to not be jostled!
Days when I think I will just lose it if I find another pile of sand on the floor or a dirty sock crumpled in the corner.  And then I find another pile of sand.
If I'm patient, and if I just do the best I can to endure, day after day...my someday will come, and there will come a day when I will not be jostled as I try to relax.
Someday there will be quiet in my home.
Sweet quiet.
Sweet lonely quiet.
Lonely quiet.
Someday there will be no piles of sand on my freshly mopped floors.  No smelly boy shoes and dirty socks to carry sand in the house.  Someday there will be wonderfully clean floors.
The day is coming where there won't be a constant enormous pile of laundry.  No little ruffle socks to match, or little boy briefs, or hoodies and jeans and sweaters to wash and fold and hang and put away.
Someday my calendar will afford me time to do things for myself.   And on this someday there won't be boy scout meetings, or parent-teacher conferences, or sudden trips to the nurse's office, and I'll have time to read that book and get a pedicure.
Someday I'll know exactly where my hair brush is, and my kitchen scissors, and the fingernail clippers.  Because they'll be exactly where I left them.  No one will be there to move them... someday.
And eventually, someday, I'll sleep soundly and quietly without interruption, because there won't be anyone who wakes with a nightmare, or tumbles off a bed, or a tooth fairy commitment, or needing a mama to wrap her arms around them to drift back sleep.
Someday.
Someday I will largely be done with my responsibilities.
And everyday is one day closer to someday.
Someday soon.

There's this sudden realization as we look at pamphlets from far off colleges, that the time has slipped away.  My parenting is largely done.  My impact is now largely nill.  My someday is just around the corner.  Did I forget to tell her that 3 in 10 teenage girls will get pregnant?  Did I emphasize enough how much she is loved by me and how God loves her even more than that?  Does she know what the superfoods are? Did I tell her teenage girls are the most victimized members of our society?  Can she make Nana's chicken soup from scratch?  I don't know.  But it's largely done never-the-less.  A realization that occurs, and has occurred every every other moment since her birth.
Where has my baby gone?
Is it too late?
Have I imparted enough wisdom?
Did I yell too much?
Did I praise often?
Does she know she's beautiful?
And smart?
Did I do enough?
I don't have an ending for this post.  With the time I have left with my sweet baby, my first baby, I will try to remember to teach more and love more and embrace Sunny more.  I will try to surrender that it will never be enough, and God will be watching her when I can't.

My someday is coming soon.
Too soon.



15 comments:

  1. found your blog through Sunday Snapshot... and cried all the way through it.

    LOVED IT!

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  2. Yes - you gave me GOOSEBUMPS and TEARS!!!

    You are entering a NEW phase of life - one that I am sure will be as equally wonderful as the past - you will build new memories - maybe even better ones. And one day? Your Sunny will give you grandbabies that will make up the same silly songs she used to sing......

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  3. Jen- Hoped they were good tears. I cried all the way through writing it!

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  4. when i got off work and saw i had a text which read "NEW BLOG POSSSSSTTT", i knew it was either about her or it was an attempt to tell me before i told her. i guess both were fulfilled. i think the collection of arm farms is starting to get a little bit out of control.

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  5. Whew . . . beautiful . . . beautiful post and beautiful girl and beautiful momma.
    -Karen
    Firstbrook Five

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  6. YES! Good tears. Thankful tears. I have two daughters 12 and 5. Your blog gave me that much needed reminder that it all goes by too fast. It made me stop in my tracks and go play with my kids. To freeze time just for today. Your words changed our day! Thank you Thank you Thank you!!

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  7. What a beautiful post. My oldest is starting her sophomore year of college. She lived at home last year and had plans to move out this year into the sorority house. But at the last hour, she changed her mind. The little ones that she "hushes," that don't let her sleep in, the screech in delight when she returns home after work...she can't leave them. I know I'll be shedding some tears when she does venture out on her own, but I'm enjoying everyday that she's still at home!

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  8. Your job won't be over that soon. I'm 34 and I still need my Mama all of the time!!! And of course my kids need her even more ; ) Maybe it's different with boys, I don't know... And just to add a little humor, I think it's my husband who misplaces the kitchen scissors, and nail clippers the most! Your girl will do amazing things. I know it. She has you for her Mama!
    Now I'm off to go clean my floors!!!! Wonderful, amazing post as usual. Thanks for sharing : )

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  9. She's just beautiful. Life does go by so quickly. Enjoy these days that you have now, and know the days to come will be even better.

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  10. Oh my. I read this post several times. I giggled, I cried, I contemplated. Absolutely beautiful and a good reminder of what this crazy job of parenting is all about, "...she craves this independence and this distance and sadly, this awayness. I think this is good. I think this means we, her parents, have done our job well..." They can only fly when we give them their wings, teach them how to use them AND then stand back and allow it to happen.

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  11. Beautiful and touching post. Your "first baby" is a beautiful young lady who has her whole life ahead of her and it will be so exciting to watch it unfold...to see what she becomes and where life takes her.

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  12. I read this in Paris and cried, then read it aloud to my husband and my voice kept cracking. I've said it before and I'll say it again...you should submit some of your writing to a local newspaper Nancy. Beautiful words.

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  13. I'm an AZ mom who thankfully just stumbled upon your blog. This is BEAUTIFUL. I cried as I read it once with my head and again with my heart. What a beautiful gift you are to each other. Good job, Mom.

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  14. This so beautifully written. I had tears in my eyes reading this. I have a daughter that is only one year old. This posts reminds me to cherish every moment with her and not wish any of it away.

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