My kids have been in Houston all week and they come home tomorrow. My husband and mother-in-law came up with a plan for a visit and I went along. I agreed that seeing their grandmother was important, just so long as I didn't have to go with them.* It's been a mix of emotions all around.
Early on as a mother I had the realization that these kids of mine are not just my kids. I may have brought them into this world and love them more than anyone else ever will, but they are their own people. They need to forge their own relationships and find their own way in the world. I can't do it for them. Letting go so they can spend time with another part of the family comes with the territory.
At the airport, my oldest daughter was concerned that the plastic case they gave her to wear around her neck to hold her ticket clashed with her outfit. My youngest was worried that they weren't going to sit in the same seat, even though that didn't make any sense. I even gladly parted with my last cash to buy them a bunch of candy and gum at the newspaper stand.
The airline made me wait until the plane was in the air before departing, which made it feel even more final. As I left, I felt very sad. You may as well have taken my arm away from me.
It got easier. And harder. My mother-in-law called me to tell me they landed. And I didn't speak to them again for a few days. I had to work in between, so there were distractions, and I took on a big project to keep me busy (while they were out of my hair.) They were never far from my thoughts.
Yesterday at work I got a call from my oldest to ask if my youngest could have permission to watch Friday the 13th. I was trying to find a way to say no without being Mean Mommy by asking the rating of the movie. I said if it was rated G, knowing full well that it wasn't, that she could watch it. Shortly after that call ended, I got a call from my mother-in-law informing me that she had no intention of letting her watch the movie and I needn't worry about that.
And now they're coming back tomorrow. I have that urge to clean the house spotless as if they're company. As if I'm trying to impress them upon their return. I also know full well that when they're home, everything will return to normal and they'll drive me crazy again in no time.
I can't wait!
*I like Texas. It's the heat, humidity and traffic that I don't like. I've never been to Austin and it would have been fun to drop my bags and see that city with some of my favorite bloggers who live there. And Lyle, that's right, I'm not from Texas but Texas wants me anyway!