October 21, 2021
Live in each season as it passes; breathe the air, drink the drink, taste the fruit, and resign yourself to the influence of each.” ~ Henry David Thoreau
I’m missing my kids. I’m currently in Nova Scotia with Damien, visiting my parents. (You see more photos of our time here, including our visit to iconic Cape Breton Island, on my Instagram account.) There is only one other time that I’ve visited Nova Scotia without the kids. I came in the fall two years ago, just me, and it was a brand new experience. To be in Nova Scotia without the whole gang here. A taste of things to come.
I know what I said in Some thoughts from a recently retired homeschool mom - I am enjoying getting some distance from the kids. I really am. And it’s something we all need.
Part of what I have loved so much about coming to visit my parents through the years is that all my immediate people are under one roof, for days, sometimes weeks (and in 2011, months) at a time. And yes, there are challenges to that arrangement, especially since my parents house only has 2 bedrooms. But being able to be together, and in such a beautiful place, outweighs the inconveniences and we all know it’s temporary, so we make do.
As the kids grow into adulthood we are leaving the stage where all the kids can sleep in one room, parents in another, grandparents in the open loft. That was a season and it is coming to a close.
All the border collie personality types (or is it just mothers?) reading this know that feeling of “everyone safe under one roof”. I crave that sense of safety and perimeter checking. And on the flip side, it’s that security that propels me out into the world, into new experiences, travel and adventures, into situations that will ultimately challenge that safety.
I had been feeling like I’m ready for this next stage. I’m revelling in it many days. The stage where the kids grow into their own definitions of adulthood. And I am free.
But then there’s the tug, an ache, the memories. The thought of the very near future where they are not tucked safe into their childhood bedrooms at night. When they leave, or we leave, whichever comes first.
I talked to my youngest child recently on Zoom. Catching up on what’s happening at home in Montreal was a salve to this discomfort I’m feeling. I told her that I missed her being here and was remembering all the times we’ve been here together, all 7 of us. In her young adult wisdom she reminded me, “we can’t go back Mom”.
Nope. We can’t.
Each season has its own beauty, hardships, gains and losses.
I’m so excited about the gains for this new season. Freedom! Travel! More time with my parents! Career dreams! New adventures! A new home!
And someday my children starting their own families and the cycle starting again. I am that nearly empty-nester already looking forward to grandchildren, should I be so lucky.
And then I remember I can’t have all that and three little ducklings tucked safe under my wing.
We all need to fly. It’s that season.
Images in this post are a sampling of the photos of the kids art that is liberally scattered throughout my parents’ place, a constant reminder of their presence in our hearts.
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