Saturday, June 02, 2007

The Circle Game

And the seasons, they go round and round
And the painted ponies go up and down
We're captive on the carousel of time

We can't return, we can only look behind from where we came
And go round and round and round in the circle game.

As a first time mother, I had a difficult lesson of letting go. Loosening the grip I have on my 32 month old daughter, Cadence. It seems like only yesterday, she was this baby:

And now, she is this strong-willed, independent creature with opinions and a personality all her own. She insists already on picking out her own clothes, her shoes, she expresses strong like and dislike of books, food, locations, and experiences. She would just as soon go dashing away from me, and since she was an infant, she never cried when I left her with other people, or even when I left the room. She was always perfectly content to be away from me. My sister, who breast-fed her own son until he was almost three, explains her viewpoint on this: a child who is being nursed at regular intervals is guaranteed regular intimacy with their mother, and so they are often more secure and quite happy to be handed off during non-nursing moments, at increasingly larger and longer intervals.

So I've felt lucky that I didn't have a clingy child that was constantly pulling at my apron strings.

Today, my parents are taking my daughter and nephew to the zoo. I know she'll have a fantastic time, and be doted upon and taken care of in a way that she doesn't always get at home, because I simply cannot give her my undivided attention 24 hours a day, seven days a week, at least, not anymore. Life requires my focus to be elsewhere sometimes! But now I'm staring at my apron strings,

(And i'll be perfect in my own way
When you cry i'll be there
I'll sing to you and comb your hair
All your troubles i will share

For apron strings
Can be used for other things
Than what they're meant for
And you'd be happy wrapped in my
Apron strings)

and wondering how the hell I'm going to cope with her being gone for so long, and even more, realizing that she's not just down the street at her grandmother's, she's 60 miles away in Cleveland at the Metro Zoo.

I called my sister as soon as she left, and burst into tears. I should be happy -- ecstatic! This has the potential for a day of debauchery. Sex, drugs, and rock and roll. And all I want to do is curl up on the couch with her PJs and watch SpongeBob on Nickolodeon.

I am so pathetic.


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