Monday, August 16, 2010

Mixed Pickles

We drove home from the cottage yesterday after a family packed weekend. We were tired but relaxed. This weekend was hubby's turn; his parents and sister had their first time with us (except his mom who had the sneak preview a few weeks back), along with two of our girls. Our little 750 square feet of paradise is a little cramped for our large family, but I have noticed a recurring feeling that washes over me when I watch the last car pull away up our lane way. Melancholy. For as much effort it takes to entertain a cottage full of people in close quarters, it is the sound of their laughter and splashing in the lake that energize our cabin and create lasting memories. I say "lasting" because even after the last car has driven off, and the last bed stripped, and the final dish washed, the walls of our cottage still vibrate with the love and good feelings that come with sharing our special place.

And now another weekend is behind us - sadly. Summer is far too short. So now we sit at mid August staring the start of a new school year in the face. I have mixed emotions; this fall is bringing a monumental shift in our household. Kidlet will be leaving in just over two weeks for university - the last of my babes. And I know from experience that she will never live at home again the same way. Home will be a temporary landing place for her between semesters and travels. It will be a safe haven and place to return for brief interludes and have laundry done. It will become the launching pad. It's the end of an era and the winding down of my hands on, active parenting.

On the other hand, I can hardly wait for her to experience the exhilaration of freedom that comes from making all her own decisions, big and small, and living them. It will be a thrill to hear her stories of dorm life, studies that she loves and loathes, and how much she misses the big screen TV comforts of home. I can dream can't I?

So I guess my emotions are all over the place. I feel like a jar of mixed pickles - some hot, sour, sweet - but all good! All of these bittersweet meanderings and feelings are rambling around and I never know which one I am going to bite into at any given moment.

Life  is good - and tasty! And for that, I am truly grateful.


  1. I can imagine how hard it will be sending Kidlet off to university. Bittersweet most likely. I'm sure she'll have a great time! And I must say my parents adjusted to having us all leave quite well...

  2. Kidlet is really lucky to have a mom who understands when it's time to let go and has the strength to do so.

    I know just what you mean about the melancholy feeling of the quiet after visitors leave. The brief Thanksgivings I was able to celebrate with my parents and brother at my house were lots of work and preparation but over far too soon.

    I guess I have lots of different pickles in my jar too, well put!

  3. Hard being a mom and even harder having to say goodbye when they're all grown up. Just say 'I love you' and let her go. She might be growing up, but she'll always be your baby.


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