Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Wednesday's Words for April 1, 2009

Something happened this past weekend that has once again changed the composite of the Ashbury household: our daughter and grandson moved into their own place.

Despite the fact that today is indeed April 1st, this is no joke. We are once more a household of 2 humans, 1 dog and 1 cat.

Our daughter and her husband have reconciled, and we’ll see how it goes. We only want her to be happy, with no parental parameters defining that happiness. We really do hope everything works out for her. But we’ve come to the conclusion it’s time for her to stand on her own two feet.

Moving out now was her idea. She had been planning to wait until May or June, as she is just now finishing her college course. She had planned to get a job and accrue a couple of months pay before looking for an apartment, but one came available, and it was a very good deal. It’s at the other end of town, which isn’t a problem in any way, shape, or form since this being a small town, there are no “bad areas”.

My beloved asked her if she was certain that this was what she wanted to do. Her response was very positive, with the added codicil that she thought that if she lived here much longer she might murder his wife.

I can sympathise with that sentiment one hundred per cent.

There exists a fine line between helping our grown children and crippling them. I regret to report that I have on more than one occasion been guilty of the latter—not just in the case of my daughter, but with my late son as well.

It’s hard, as a parent, to say no. Even when you understand deep inside that ‘no’ is really the best response in the long run, it’s still a tough call to make.

We’re parents for life, of course. There will always be times when our children need us—well, until we hit that magical point where roles reverse. But until then, we know we’re always “on call.”

But we won’t always be here, and there comes a point when our children must face the tough stuff on their own.

My beloved and I are pleased we were able to help. Over the past fifteen months, we all had to make adjustments as we learned how to cohabitate together. The only space we had available for them was the upstairs, equal in floor space to the entire down stairs, but not quite “finished”. This had been a renovation Anthony and my husband had worked on before our son died, and since that time, my beloved simply hasn’t had the heart to finish. So we offered but ‘rough’ rooms – floors and ceilings and insulation and windows that worked, certainly, but no drywall or paint.

We had to learn how to live with two younger people, both of whom live life louder and faster than we were used to. My daughter had to get used to not being the woman in charge, and my grandson had to get used to having older people around.

Since they are relatively close by, and don’t as yet have such amenities as a washer and a dryer, I can be sure I’ll see my daughter on a regular basis. Until the end of the school year, my grandson will be coming here each morning in order to catch his bus to school. So of course they aren’t going out of sight or out of touch for long stretches at a time.

There’s a quality to the quiet here now that had been missing; even on weekends over the past fifteen months when they would be gone for a day or two, the house didn’t achieve the degree of quiet it has right now.

So life here will be returning to normal. Whatever that is.


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