I have heard it said that life begins when the kids leave home and the dog dies. A little harsh, I think. Over the past 20 years our kids have left home and returned several times. Our eldest scared me silly one day when she declared at the age of 15 that she would never leave home – “When I get married, I’m bringing my husband to live here” Well soon after her 21st birthday she was gone – then she got married and did in fact bring her husband to live with us but only for a few months before they went to live in the UK. (I breathed a sigh of relief but those words would come back to haunt me!)
Our second daughter left early – first to live in res at her college and then to live in another town after graduation – she didn’t come back. Instead she settled down in a text book manner, married and had a family of her own.
Just as our youngest was nearing the end of her education we thought to ourselves – two down, one to go and the dog is getting old. Then wham – the oldest returned with two babies in tow, the youngest graduated left home, came back, went overseas, came back again, left and then returned once more when things went pear-shaped at her digs. But now after a few years of living in the “Princess Suite” at home she’s cut the apron strings and moved out again!
So now we have the oldest, the teen-aged grandsons and two cats – yes the dog finally died. And life might not yet have begun (whatever that means) but it certainly hasn’t been boring!
The youngest left two weeks ago and today her dad and I went to see how she has settled in. She is sharing with a friend – a tiny flat not quite up to the standard of our princess but the stunning view, the proximity to work, friends and fabulous places makes up for it. And she is ecstatically happy to finally have some independence.
And how do I feel about it all – well – I miss her already – but now that I have seen her flat, I know she will be happy there. It’s a good move on the other side of the peninsular but a great place to visit and the shopping nearby is stunning – great for mother and daughter bonding:-) And I have a spare room!