So far, this summer has not been a smooth one for our household. It seems that we’ve yet to find a good routine. We’ve spent time preparing for and attending VBS and honestly, this year that seemed like a full time job. It was one of the best we’ve hosted for a while so that was good. Still, after that we girls seem to be at odds. Not Darren. Because he’s still doing his thing, but we girls are sorely lacking structure. We’ve been sleeping in way too late every day and staying up too late every evening. Everyone is kind of cranky and off-key and for my daughters that translates to fighting. Lots and lots of fighting.
When I was expecting my second born, I fondly wondered what her relationship with her sister would be like. Not having a sister myself, I figured it would be all unicorns, rainbows and puffy clouds. Since my girls are nearly 7 years apart in age, I thought fighting would be nonexistent. After all, what could my off-spring have to disagree over with that much of a span between them?
**cue maniacal laughter**
What could they have to fight about? Um, in a word? EVERYTHING.
She pinched me.
She held the cat too tight.
She spit on me.
She licked the doorknob.
She ate my doughnut/cookie/lollipop/popsicle/pizza crust. (Yes, I’m quite sorry to say I’ve had to referee disagreements–plural– about pizza CRUSTS. You may stop laughing now. I’m as serious as a heart attack here.)
She said my butt looks funny.
She said I’m ugly.
She took my trombone.
She took my dolly.
She’s looking out my window. (Yeah, the first time I heard that one I was utterly speechless. YOUR window? I’m pretty sure *I* am the one paying for this car. Therefore, all windows, regardless of location are MY windows and I’ve decided that everyone may view the world through them, thankyouverymuch.)
All this is to illustrate the point that whereas I ASSUMED my children would have too much of a span between them to argue about things, I was clearly, decidedly, stupidly W~R~O~N~G. They can argue about anything and everything and it makes me weary. Utterly and completely weary.
To that end, I decided they needed a break from each other. And if Madison was able to enjoy some time away *and* hone her musical skill, so much the better. So this afternoon I dropped my daughter off at music camp which (not so) co-incidentally is being held at my collegiate alma mater. It’s no secret that I adored my college years and even though Madison is only going into seventh grade, I hoped she’d feel the same way after attending this event. So yes, this afternoon I registered her at camp. And it was kind of a little class reunion for mommy, who got to see several of her friends from college as well as some of her instructors.
But you know what I didn’t expect? I didn’t expect that it would be so HARD to say goodbye to my girl. There’s a saying that goes something like this: “Motherhood is kind of like having your heart walk around outside your body” Somehow I never got that until today. This is a whole lotta control to give to someone else, handing my baby over that way and I am a Grade A control freak. How ever will she survive without dear old mom telling her what to do and when to do it? How will she know where to hang her wet towel if I’m not there to tell her? How will she know what to eat if I’m not there to put it on her plate? How will she know it’s time to go to bed if I’m not there to direct? How will she know how to get around campus without my inner map to guide her?
How, indeed? Well, I guess she’ll navigate all these things because even though we might butt heads a bit lately, she knows she’s well loved and I know I’ve given her the tools she needs to succeed. And even though it’s (REALLY) hard to sit back and let her make mistakes and have these experiences on her own, she’s spreading her wings and getting ready to fly. Because really, today it’s moving on into seventh grade. Tomorrow she’ll be off to college. Blink again, and she’ll be out on her own. I know this because yesterday I brought her home from the hospital and about an hour ago I was sending her off to preschool. Time goes by SO quickly it’s just ridiculous and in the midst of sleepless nights, potty training and sibling rivalry, it’s so easy to lose sight of this. There are days when it’s very easy for a mama to feel unappreciated because let’s face it, no one’s kids ever turn around and say, “Hey, Mom, thanks for grounding me today. I totally see where you are coming from and would have done the same thing myself.” Nope, not going to happen. But there comes a day when they probably will realize that all this was for their best interest.
So for today, I’m missing my girl even though I know she’s having fun already. I’m enjoying the texts she’s sending me as she plays with her new cell phone which has finally become a necessity. (And yes, she was the very last 11 year old in the entire WORLD who didn’t have a phone–although she also will have to hand it back to me when she gets home but that’s probably a post for another time.) I’m looking forward to going to her concerts because they bring back a lot of fond memories for me personally but more than anything else, I’m really enjoying the sitting back and watching of my precious baby girl become a young woman on the verge with so many possibilities and so much potential. I can’t believe we’re here but yeah, I guess that’s it.
Still, I have no idea how I’m going to let her drive or date or go to her prom but I guess you get there moment by moment and experience by experience. Yep, that or go crazy trying to stuff her in her closet until she’s 30.