Being mom. You have this idea that once you get past the potty training, past the terrible teens, it’s all good, right? You think, once you’ve gotten them out the door and into the college of their dreams, you can relax. Apparently, it doesn’t work like that. But just like every other aspect of parenting, there is a silver lining.
My intelligent, beautiful, talented, kind-hearted, daughter, away at school, has gotten herself into a pickle. And of course it’s mom she calls for help. And so: mom to the rescue. Self-sacrificing to the end… at least that’s one way of looking at it.
Yes, she needs me, for real. And yes, I came to the rescue. Yes, it’s a well-being issue, but I’ll spare you the details. The important thing is that even though I am doing what she needs, yet again, this time I win too. I get to move to the part of California I actually WANT to live in, and start my life over. It feels like I’m the one who’s 19!
Not that it hasn’t been disruptive. Even though I’ve been saying I wanted to leave Southern California for decades - the actual DOING of that came about quite suddenly. From first inkling that I was truly ready to leave LA at last - but with no idea where I was going, to her crisis, to finding and renting an apartment, to packing up and moving: three weeks.
In fact, I have to return to LA for my own birthday party, planned before I had any idea of my iminent departure. I decided to travel by Slow Boat (actually an Amtrak train—an 11-hour scheduled journey on a train currently running three hours late) just to sort of let it settle in… I have been moving too fast to integrate any of this. So I’m writing this as I watch the scenery slip by, allowing the shifts to settle into my bones as I try to write them for you.
Sometimes that’s just how it happens, I guess. The Universe provides you the kick in the pants you need to get on with it. NOW. It may take me a few trips back and forth to get it all sorted out, but the hardest part is over. She’s not out of the woods yet, but I suspect that she’ll get better just because I am near (maternal proximity effect) but if not, we will get to the bottom of this.
In any event, something unexpected and wonderful has happened for me in all of this. Most of my own health issues have resolved - just by my making the decision to get back on the path of the life I had been denying, a life that no longer includes living in SoCal; not even in my beloved Cabin In The Woods.
I’ll keep the cabin, and return it to its intended use: a magical get-away when I need a break from the city, a place to have my birthday party. I just hope I make it in time!