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Sunday, September 6, 2009

Letting Go...and Letting In.

I am not sure when I started noticing the chapters of my life going so quickly.

So many years went by when time seemed to stand still and now so much of it is gone.

My four girls are 8 years apart. So the first 10 years of my marriage we were getting pregnant, giving birth, breast feeding, and in a whirlwind of diapers, doctors visits, and potty training. We dealt with cancer and debt and it was life and we lived it.

When I was married for 10 years my girls were 8,7,2 and 10 months old.

The next 5 years were filled with lots of laundry and food shopping and girl scouts and school functions and it was so busy all the time, I barely had time to stop and breathe, must less shower or think of the future.

I went back to work when D4 was 5 and I worked and cared for a family of 6 without ever thinking anything of it. Life was moving along and it seemed like our world of chaos and giggling and fun would go on forever.

The point is that I never thought that time would end. There were moments when I would have killed, literally killed for a hot bath and a manicure. And now when I have the time for a man/pedi, I want someone to go with me.

I am desperately holding on to the time I have left because after all these years, the time is coming to an end.

In the book Insomnia by Stephen King, there is a death timer that the guy can hear that clicks away, ticking off the last moments of life. That is how I feel now.

Each moment, each event is one day closer to the day when I will have to let go of them all and let them go their own way.

I had a very hard time leaving D1 at college and then the next year I had a really hard time leaving D2 at college.

But we got used to it. We went from a large table of 6 to a small table of 4.

We went from laundry piling up all over the place to a few loads a week. We ate less, spent less at the Outback and enjoyed our new life as a small family.

And things were good for awhile.

The older girls came home now and then. We refinished the bedrooms and made one room a "guest room" where they could stay when they are "visiting". D1 came home last summer for awhile and for awhile this summer while she searched for a job after college.

And today... we moved her into a new apartment.

And she is gone. Gone from a long chapter in our life, on to the beginning of her new life. With so much hope and so much promise. Life for her begins today. She has set out on a journey of Newness.(not a word right? whatever.)

A new world. A new day. No day but today.

And although we will miss her in our own part of the world, I am pleasantly settled in my feelings of her starting her life. I am confident in her ability to adjust and settle in and I am grateful that she has found the most awesome roommate/friend/apartment finder in the world and that they will be sharing this experience together.

Letting go is hard. I helped her move in, we cleaned and shopped and hauled 22 years of stuff up 3 flights of stairs. And then it was time to go. I could have stayed forever.

I wanted to clean more so everything would be spotless, to cook something so they wouldnt starve and to lecture for hours on the dangers of two young girls loose in the city.

But it was time for me to go.

Figuritively and Literally.

Time to go, to let go.

And next year when D2 begins her new life I will let go again. And when D3 leaves for college in one year, more letting go.

And then in just 8 years I will be letting go for the last time. Letting go of my last daughter, letting go of motherhood and all the things that go with it.

I have spent quite some time complaining about my life. Complaining about my kids, my husband, my house, my homework, never my job, i love that.

But I loved it all. Every minute of this crazy ride.

There were many times I didnt think I could make it through and there are rare times when I didnt even want to.

Letting go is part of the ride. Part of the ride I always dreaded. Part of the ride I thought would never come.

But it is here.

And as my time as a mother is starting to end. letting go of one life I loved, trading it for the possibility of another life.

I cant imagine loving anything more than being a mother but until I became a mother I could never imagine life with my children.

The possibility of a new life is one I have to let in. The future is as uncertain to me today as it is to D1 on her first night in her new apartment.

But we are strong determined women and we will make it.

Life has changed and I have to change with it.

I am letting go today and letting in.

But I'm gonna miss this.