Thursday, August 12, 2010

Simply Mom

I had a simple pleasure all ready to link up this week,
but something happened that changed my focus.

My daughter came home.

I realize that this might seem too ordinary even for a simple pleasures post,
 but in my world,  mothering
 is the simplest pleasure of all.
And I get fewer opportunities to do it these days.

The Practical One is a senior in college this year, and her visits are becoming less frequent along with my opportunities to be needed. This summer, she didn’t move home at all but stayed in Macon for an internship. She’s becoming more independent and building a life that, while it includes me, isn’t always needful of me. She tells me stories of schoolmates who still need their parents to fight their battles and hold their hands. She speaks of it sadly and tells me that she’s glad that we chose a different pattern.

I am told that I should be proud of that.
I am.
But there’s still a corner in my heart that wants to be needed sometimes.

This morning, I’ll get to make sure that everything in her closet has been given a good ironing. I'll get to fold up the sheets and bedding that I freshly washed and hung outside to give the "fresh air and sunshine" smell. I'll get to take her to the store to stock up on all the necessities for the next few months. I’ll get to ride with her to Macon to help clean the old house that she’s been renting for the summer, and tomorrow, I’ll get to help move her back on campus.

There’s not a single item on that list that she’s incapable of doing by herself. In fact, I had wondered whether she would need me at all this year. She didn’t. The thing is, she’s a decent enough kid to want me anyway.

Just come along for the ride, she said.
Dad can meet us in Macon later.
We’ll ride together.
We can talk.
We can shop.
And she can show me the historic Macon cemetery
where the Civil War soldiers are buried.
And look for the best place to catch the blue hour in the Macon skyline.

So I’m coming along  for the ride. The relationship has changed.  I have spent her lifetime capturing her moments. I have followed like the paparazzi snapping shots as she passed through phase after phase.  But this morning, I realized that she had entered a new phase, and like that rocking chair moment  that I yakked about months ago, it had come without warning.

I think I will like this new kind of mothering. I just kind of wish that someone had followed us around with a shiny red Kodak and captured the moment when my daughter became my friend.

Being a mom, in whatever capacity, is this week's simple pleasure.


Sharing this with Dayle at A Collection of This and That. Please come join the party with me.

Project Simple Pleasures2


Ann said...

And this is a fantastic phase ..... I am enjoying the heck out of it myself.
Who knows? Maybe someday you and your daughter will be table scaping, or taking a quilt class together?

gnee @ Singing With Birds said...

You are along for the ride because you are her Mom. It's wonderful that you also have a friendship, but no matter what, you will always been her mom and she needs you. I did not understand that so much until I married my husband and my mom was in California. I was independent, but no one could take her place in my life. I would add that my girls were both confident, had successful college experiences and did really well with careers and new marriages. It all changed when the first baby arrived! Congratulations on raising a young woman who is thriving on her own. She loves and needs you just as much! Have a glorious day together...

Chatty Crone said...

You know what Debbie, days and times like this - are the simple, wonderful pleasures of life. sandie

Tammy said...

Sounds like you raised a wise and wonderful daughter. Certainly something to be very proud of! Best wishes for a beautiful day! :) Tammy

Jennie said...

Awww, now you've made *me* cry! Because I remember my migration from needy daughter to independent woman...and because I anticipate the day coming with my own children.

Motherhood is indeed a simple pleasure! (And a complex one too...ha!)

This is beautiful!! Well done. (But seriously, when did she get to be a senior in college? Now I feel old!)

Dayle said...

I love this, Debbie, and I so agree. Mothering (although not always a simple task) is certainly a simple pleasure. Your daughter is a blessed girl. Thanks for linking up today.

southerninspiration said...

You making me cry, girl.........LOL! I so understand what you are saying! My baby girl is so independent that she rarely NEEDS me, but I do love when she wants me along! Enjoy and delight to your heart's content, knowing that we all applaud you!! Take care, and I look forward to hearing how it went, and the fun you had!!!

Nickie said...

I understand, completely. My oldest is starting his second year of college. My heart broke when he moved into the dorm last year... but he didn't 'need' me anymore. I do have younger ones still at home, who do still need me. But now, I've learned what it feels like for your child to want you. It's a great feeling!

I found your blog from the Simple Pleasures linky. I love it and I am going to be your newest follower. Looking forward to reading more!

A very blessed lady! said...

Sadly, I have heard as parents, we are weaning ourselves out of a job...and look at the reward, a new friend! and as for your daughter she will need you more than you think...Wedding/grandbabies and all of the in between. You are blessed to have such great daughters and they are blessed with a wonderful mother enjoy your new phase:)

Denise said...

Well, you made me cry. Again. What a sweet post about a sweet daughter by a sweet mom. I remember this time so well with the newlywed daughter when I realized she was now my friend. Maybe this will help with pending "blues".
Hugs sister,

PS Could this friendship be a good excuse to escape to Macon for a visit?

Happier Than a Pig in Mud said...

What a wonderful post, it sounds like you have a great relationship with your daughter! Congrats on raising a happy, independent child-enjoy!

FrouFrouBritches said...

Debbie, you got me crying like a big ole baby! It's amazing how things change, huh? Just remember, she'll always NEED you whether she acts like it or not. I'm almost forty and I still NEED my mother! And, she's one of my very best friends!

Have fun with your baby.

Marsha's Mpressions said...

What a wonderful post and reminder to us moms how precious our daughters are.

Entertaining Women said...

Such a smart mom! I remember those times with my daughter. I am blessed with the times that she still wants me to be a part of her life. Thank you for your kind comments on my post. Cherry Kay

Gayle said...

Such a sweet, sweet post. How quickly the years go by.

Jane (Frugal Fine Living) said...

I can relate. Our son has been out of the house since college. He lives in Nashville, works full time, is a grad student and an officer in the ANG. I'm very proud of him. Our daughter, who is homeschooled, has two more years of high school left. After that, I'll be getting out the rocking chair. :)


Kelli said...

Sniff, sniff...Simply being a mom IS THE BEST!! You are seeing the rewards of that long journey! How awesome!

Sharon Kirby said...

Oh Debbie,
Today you have me SOL (smiling out loud) and COL (crying out loud). Motherhood is a bittersweet journey. The tug/pull of wanting our children to be independent, and yet missing the feeling of being "needed" is a tough one.
However, when your grown-up children CHOOSE your company - that is a magical thing!
My two sons are both 20-something, post-college age MEN...and yet, they consider me their friend. And I can honestly say, if they weren't my flesh and blood, I would choose them to be my friends, too.

That is a blessing...

Besides, I will always have my memories of them before they could form memories - and in some way, that's a small piece of them that is just mine alone!!

xoxo 2 U!

Joan said...

This is a beautiful post, Debbie. I'm not a mother, but I do remember a time when my own mother became my best friend.


CAL said...

And such is life - sighhh. ((Debbie))

Francie of The Scented Cottage said...

Isn't it a blessing that once we have done our part in raising them we can have a different but wonderful relationship !


Hi. Visiting from tablescapes. You have a talent for writing/story telling. Love reading your blog.
I hope my daughters consider me their friend. We have been blessed with 2 wonderful daughters. Both went off to college and met and married wonderful Christian guys last year; and we have our first baby granddaughter turning 1 tomorrow.
Thanks for sharing your life with us.
~ Julie

Ms.Daisy said...

I just spent most of this past week with both of my daughters ages 45 and 42 and they are my friends!! They were spending the week at the Jersey shore and we had a ball with their husbands and kids! I love your blog and reading about your life!


Lynn Richards said...

I am just entering this phase with my eldest. Next week she will go back for her sophmore year in college. I hate, hate, hate it. But I love, love, love going to see her! This year, as I leave her, she will be coming home less and less. In fact, for spring semester, she will be studying in Florence, Italy. Just tell me I will survive not seeing her for 4 months.....I do have a sense it will build our friendship, though!!

BECKY said...

This is absolutely precious Debbie. I have 4 girls, three of them adults, and I know just what you mean. We move from control to influence and from parent to friend. There is something truly divine about it all, isn't there?

I have to say that you sure wrote this from your heart, and you write beautifully!! It leaves me wanting to read more!!!
Hope your Sunday is filled with JOY! You just added some to my evening!

Angela said...

Lovely post! I couldn't help but to cry as I remember when I became the friend of my mom and that there will be a time when my 12 yr odl daugher will be my friend.



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