The end of an era …

So maybe it’s because it is year-end or because it is Christmas which normally brings a time of reflection for me, but I am finding it particularly suspending watching life and her endings unfold before me and knowing in that very moment that this is the end … this realization comes with great melancholy for me …
There were people that I was really close friends with in high school, if you had told me then that today we would not be friends … you would have broken my heart … but it is true … life moves forward and many relationships end and sadly wane with time.  I had one of those moments a couple of weeks ago when my daughter ended her gymnastics journey …
Do you remember your mother insisting that you learn to play the piano which you absolutely H.A.T.E.D. at the time (all 7 years of it)!  All that practising, learning all those BLEEPING scales, theory and those exams – oui!  Then when you thought you were old enough to be making your own decisions, you daringly announced to your mother (from across the room), to a living room full of the Prayer Group, that you would not be taking piano next year but that you wanted to take up kite-surfing instead!!!  Do you remember?  Only for decades later, say maybe in your mid-30’s, trying to impress some bird, you desperately try to bang out Chop-sticks – realizing in that very moment that maybe your mum did know something you didn’t and that maybe you shouldn’t have given up piano after all?!?  Or was yours giving up ballet to take up horse riding, that you wouldn’t do for too long anyway because you developed an allergy to fury animals (and being thrown)mine was!  Or did you give up Karate to take up playing the spoons … yip this was one of those moments.  There are other logistical problems with Sarah continuing gymnastics next year, but I couldn’t help but feel and fully realize that this was one of those decisions that we will regret later in life.
I once heard Nicole Kidman interviewed, she was asked a question about her (then) early teenage children, she said something along the lines of … the most important, but difficult, thing for a parent to do is to allow their children to be who they want to be, without too much of our meddling … so true! 
So what have I learned … I think I have mentioned before that parent is hard – I second that!  I’m finding it very difficult parenting neutrally.  By this I mean, not imprinting what I want for my children, under the guise of “only wanting the best for them” or “not wanting them to make my mistakes”, as opposed to what they want for themselves.   Every day my girls teach me something new about myself and this parenting process (both the beautiful and the ugly truths)  … and some days I handle it better than others … and I am hoping that that is going to be ok!
Love you all madly …
Warm regards … Collette in Cape Town

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1 comments:

Kathleen said...

I whole-heartedly agree with you on this - parenting is hard! I've recently started dating again (and if I wrote a blog, that would have taken up a whole page!). My youngest promptly decided to move to his dad! How to deal with that as a mom - feelings like guilt, relief (can't belief I'm actually saying that), sadness, guilt, guilt, etc surfaces...
Sorry got completely side-tracked there for a minute...
I must say I would like to turn the clock back and have only one child, as I now realise that both my children would have been wonderful as a single child. BUT then don't ask me to choose now as I love both way too much. So there is probably some analyst reading this and thinking this mom needs therapy...

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