Now my big girl is turning 25. She is off to big law which means you continue law school knowing you are scooped up into a world of allure and grinding hard work. She left and I fell to pieces. She fulfills our hopes and dreams and sacrifice. But there is something final here that all my friends are murmuring and grieving about. It is the inevitable passage of life. In order for them to succeed it means we by definition are getting old. There's no escaping it and as my father always said, Beats the alternative. Still the cost of parenting is letting go. We know we have to. The cost of worrying about their safety is grey hair. The cost of a life, priceless.
My price is sorrow and loss. For a lifetime of doubt and confusion, adjustments and should haves and what ifs and fear of abandonment; it's over now. I must not let myself be bitter or defined by it. There just may be a little space left for allowing.
Having good work, a loyal partner, loving, kind kids, no matter the fact that there's a constant struggle for money and stability, is its own reward. I had tons of help and privilege; and I had none. It kept coming and going; learning, changing, re-inventing. For the first time, I imagine not being around anymore. There's a bit of relief in that, and I'm only 60+! No, I am not suicidal! I am wistful about the circle of life and all it's damn cliches. I miss jumping in the lake, not having to check my phone. First love. First job. I miss the hope and potential. You see I lived in a fantasy where things were supposed to be a certain way. Your grandparents waved goodbye from the driveway. Their lives had meaning.
I am only now growing up. Nothing is owed us. My daughter goes out the door and with her goes my heart.