>I heard that song by Simon and Garfunkel on my way home from work the other day. I think sometimes that song may describe me better than I am willing to admit.
My older daughter relocated to Florida. She hated the winter’s here. I give her a lot of credit. Granted, she is living on my sisters property in an apartment that used to be the garage, so she is not totally alone. Because of family being there it is an easier transition. But I remember living in new places and not knowing a soul, it can be scary and overwhelming, depressing and lonely. I moved just about every two years growing up. Every year from third grade to twelfth was a new school for me. I know scary, I know lonely.
It hurts too much to leave something you love. And love I did. There were best friends, good friends, fun friends and boy friends. All left behind. Again and again and again. On the positive side. Because of this constant moving I make friends very easily. On the negative side…I don’t get too close, I keep you at arms length and I don’t commit too deeply, because eventually there will be parting. And quite frankly I have had enough bites of that sweet sorrow to have a toothache. Me equals rock.
And a rock feels no pain.
My girl spent the weekend with her father and step mother so they got to see her more than me. (he paid for her to fly home, so I really didn’t have any footing in demanding she stay here.) She was busy all weekend and I really didn’t get any time with her but I did secure the taking her to the airport part in advance to ensure some mother daughter time.
As we were dropping her off at the airport my other daughter asked if I was going to cry? Why is she asking that? Because the stepmother cried. Yes, I am repeating that in my ‘bratty little kid mimicking you’ voice! No, I wasn’t going to cry. People leave. You can’t cry every time. I did cry when I pulled away, leaving her in Florida. I could cry now, if I worked on it. I am not going to cry but that doesn’t mean I am not sad (no I am not being defensive).
If you really must know I cried when she was here because it was a rude awakening for me to find out that she wanted to spend her time home with her friends and. not. me. No, it wasn’t a sobbing pathetic crying about how much I miss my baby girl. It was a deeper leaving. She was really going. And as a mother you are never quite ready for the leaving part. I know, I know, it’s what we raise them to do blah, blah, blah.
As we say our good byes I am thinking that the older daughter thinks the stepmother must love her more because she cried when she left AND she had to add that Daddy didn’t cry and barely even hugged her, like it was no big deal that she was leaving. She was clearly hurt by his lack of apparent disregard for her leaving which is making me think she is REALLY thinking similar thoughts about me and my love for her because I am not crying. (you can be darn sure that I broke a couple of her ribs hugging her good bye, it’s been three days, I bet she is STILL sore! Damn straight I love you and will miss you!)
Now on the drive home I feel the need to discuss this with the younger daughter, trying to act like the stepmother is just a silly woman in menopause with unmanageable emotions. If that is the case then I am off the hook for being so together and IN control and very cleverly allows me to avoid addressing what could possibly be one of my issues. Yes, yes I am ashamed to say I need justification as to why the stepmother can cry and not me and I am hoping Ellen gives it to me.
But no, Ellen thinks it’s okay that she cried. Practically normal even. Her explanation for this is that the stepmother really enjoys having all the children around so when they do leave she feels the loss and is very sad. She further explains that I on the other hand am not like other people or the stepmother (I am trying really hard not to be snide when typing that word), because I don’t seem to like having people around. I tend to like to be alone more…
Wait. What? What’s she saying? She thinks I like to be alone? Really? Me equals island?
And an island never cries.
Where is my therapist?