Friday, March 28, 2008

A Snow Day And An Empty Nest

Supergirl II, walking in the rain

Supergirl I (the dark-eyed one) and her Beloved at Mount Holyoke last Halloween.

Overnight and into this morning, we got about two inches of wet, slippery rain and snow, causing school closings all over the county. In recent days, I've tried to graciously accept many fine people's optimism that "it's feeling like spring today" but I knew it wasn't. No robins. I have not seen or heard of a single robin sighting. That, my friends, is the true harbinger of spring around these parts. At least for me. I'm with the robins; we always know for sure.

So here I am sitting at my desk, looking out over the river at a time when I am typically taking school lunch count. I'm taking count instead of how many squirrels miss the feeder from the nearby tree limbs because of the wet ice. Hey, it qualifies as a meal count. And regardless of how much I want spring, I love a good snow day!

Life is different, certainly, without girls in the house. It feels especially poignant on a snow day, when weather triumphs over the evils of school. They would have been home with me today; probably still sleeping. But here.
When I moved in with W.P. four years ago, one of his daughters was attending college in Boston, one was back and forth between the house and her dormroom and both of my daughters were in high school and lived partly with us and partly with their dad. Now my oldest, Supergirl I, is a junior at Mount Holyoke College and Supergirl II is a freshman at Boston University. W.P.'s oldest graduated with a masters and is living and working in San Francisco and the younger daughter is in graduate school and engaged to be married. Young adulthood is a period of such rapid growth.

The house is empty. Too empty. Oh, no. Not another empty nest post in the blogosphere! Yes and no. I'm thrilled for them. They are exceptional young women. I believe they're gonna do it and do it their way. They already are. And...I miss them. I chat daily with both my Supergirls. Intrestingly,they call me more often than I call them. There's a reluctance on my part to seem overbearing. They're young women after all, making a lot of their own decisions.

Now I've done some things in my life that may not exactly qualify me for Mother of The Year but they were in the realm of my personal relationships and my divorce from their father. I've tried to be a good role model, to set boundaries and to give to them the only things I feel I do well to a fault - I gave them lots of love. I communicated with them. For better or for worse, they know where I stand. I'm not the kind of mother whose kids are her pals. I'm a mom. Though I believe that as my relationship with my daughters evolves, the friendship piece does seem to come into focus more. The mother piece, I believe to be something they will always need. It's the constant. It's the Northern Star.


  1. I bet you have every reason to be proud of your girls and proud of yourself as a mother. I relate completely to what you say about having kids and getting divorced. I went through it and didn't see my daughter from that marriage for 8 years. The pain was excrutiating at times but I was still her dad. Now, we are building up our relationship again as she's 19 and at university and well old enough to make her own mind up about me. We've so much in common. Sorry to go about my personal just rang a bell.

    Spring? It comes ever earlier here. The robins have been going mad for weeks.


  2. SB: Don't be sorry! Please. I'm so glad you did. I'm new to blogging but not new to making friends.

    I'm also very open about my life, my feelings and very appreciative when others share with me. Just not inclined to do so extensively in a public way. Please email me anytime; my addie is on the page.

    Mad robins...I love it! :-D

  3. P.S.

    I'm so glad that you and your daughter are reunited. You must so happy and grateful for this chance to know her again. Supergirl II is also 19. SGI will be 21 (yikes!) in August. Great ages.

  4. What an interesting blog you have! So many subjects of interest. I noticed your entry about Magritte. My husband's cousin once wrote a book about Magritte. I think he was (or maybe still is ??) the curator of an art museum in Scotland.

    Thanks for visiting my blog today and leaving such a nice comment.

  5. Those are two lovely girls, aren't they? And in so many ways: smart, beautiful, talented, kind and loving.

    I couldn't be prouder, and I know you couldn't either.

    It's worth keeping in mind that, as I perceive it, they're really proud of US, too. That means a lot to me.

    You're doing fine with our gurrrls, Gurrrl. This was a lovely post to read. Thank you.

  6. CR: don't forget fiesty...when they get steamed, whooooooooeeeeee.
    It'll serve them well cuz sooner or later ya haveta kick some ass along the way.

  7. Though I believe that as my relationship with my daughters evolves, the friendship piece does seem to come into focus more. The mother piece, I believe to be something they will always need. It's the constant. It's the Northern Star.

    Lucky girls...

    In my neck of the woods the winter jumps in and then spring swoops down and as suddenly as it seemed to arrive... winter cracks another grin! Then two days after ice comes the sun and sixty-seven and then...

  8. Your girls are beautiful. You are my kind of mom. Human. And I understand the boundaries. I've not always been good with them, but now that I'm going that way, it's working and we're all the better for it.

    Lovely post.

  9. DCup: Thank you! Your children are beautiful, too! I really enjoy the family photos on your blog.

    CR: I like having you around. You keep me honest! :-)

  10. Such beautiful girls! I'm sure they are every bit as proud of you as you are of them.
    Daughters do tend to become friends as we and they grow older, and it is such a pleasure. Sons are a pride and joy too, but in an entirely different way. They seem to remain sons, not friends, to a mother. Once a daughter becomes a true adult,
    experiencing what we have experienced, the friendship grows.

  11. beautiful.

    my daughter is 35. i had her at 21.

    i am her mom and i have always kept that in mind. she has friends, but everyone needs a mom oer dad or whatever parental figure you may be lucky enough to have if they love you.

    i told my daughter a few years ago that i tried to be the best mom i could be but that i knew thr ways i failed at it, could have done things differently, told her the reasons for some things and she understood them and me and we understand and apprieciate each other more.

    your girls are doing great. you and cr have every right to be proud.


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