Every Time We Say Goodbye


'Every time we say goodbye, I cry...a little.
Every time we say goodbye, I wonder why...a little.
Why the gods above me, who must be in the know.
Think so little of me, they allow you to go.
When you're near there's such an air of spring about it.
I can hear a lark somewhere, begin to sing about it.
There's not a love song finer...but how strange the change from major to minor.
Every time we say goodbye.' 
Every Time We Say Goodbye-Cole Porter
Oh, Cole, thank you.

Once again the Potter Family trio has been downgraded to a solo act. Last week I spent four days alone, in this strange new place where I know absolutely no one, but at least I had the heady anticipation of one last day together. That last day was frantic and stressful and involved a lot of driving, first to and from New York, and then yesterday morning we drove her back to DC. She and I both cried, a little. 

'Every time we say goodbye, I cry...a little.
Every time we say goodbye, I wonder why...a little.'

Her winter break at home was frantic and stressful and involved a lot of packing, moving, painting, and unpacking and not enough snuggling, laughing, and having fun. I feel bad about this. I feel like I failed the 'fun mom' challenge. This is silly and I realize that. She had a week long vacation to Europe with her beau, her break was plenty fun. It's just the part with us wasn't much fun. So, here I am feeling regrets that we didn't have enough fun together and she's likely not coming home for the summer and spring break is far too short and the next time she might be home for any significant amount of time is a year from now and...and...and...

The truth is that facing the empty nest is fucking hard and it does not get any easier. 

Why doesn't it get any easier?

It really should get easier, don't you think?

Mr. Potter left a scant few hours after we got home from DC. 

'Why the gods above me, who must be in the know.
Think so little of me, they allow you to go.'

In the new book manuscript, I submitted multiple essays on facing the empty nest. The editors pared them back to one, then added a second essay back into the mix. The truth is, it's not a one essay topic. It's a process. Apparently, it's a process that will continue to be vexing. I wish I was better at this stuff, but I'm not. 

I don't want to say goodbye. I don't know how to let her go without losing a piece of my heart every single time. 

However, I must keep letting go and keep losing pieces of my heart. That's the deal. Children grow up and become adults. We have to let them go. Sure, some folks are lucky to have their children live nearby. Other folks are probably secretly or not so secretly glad to see their children go away. Lots of children come back as adults these days. Our daughter is not likely to come back or live nearby. Her goals, intellect, and ambition are going to take her places far and wide. This means we did our job and armed her with the skills she needs to go forth and be successful.

This is good! This is very, very good.

'When you're near there's such an air of spring about it.
I can hear a lark somewhere, begin to sing about it.
There's not a love song finer...'

Yet, it doesn't make the saying goodbye any less painful.

'...but how strange the change from major to minor...'
xoxo,
Madge


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