I’ve written about the beauty and joy of closed doors in my house. Specifically of the beauty and joy when the door to my daughter’s bedroom is closed. Because when it’s closed, she’s home. She may be shut inside her room with a friend and I’d feel guilty knocking to interrupt them, but she’s home.
Well, she was home, and now she’s not. Not this home at least. She’s back home at her other home in Minnesota. Her door is open again, all the time. Her bed is made and her room is neat.
As much as that’s the way things are supposed to be, it’s also not. Or at least it sits weird at first. I know I’ll get used to her not being here again, but I’d gotten used to her being here. And her being here is more fun for me. Much more fun for me.
I’m happy that she’s back at school. I’m happy because she’s happy. And it’s been a few days so the open door and made bed and neat room are no longer jarring. At least not as jarring. I know I’ll get more and more used to it as days go by.
I don’t mind the sadness at her leaving, because it means I so enjoyed her being home. (This home.) This parenting thing is so weird. You birth them; you raise them; you (in many ways) focus your life around them, and they focus their lives around you. And then, if you’ve done it right, you send them off.
I think other cultures know what they’re doing when they keep extended families intact in one home. Or at least one town or one neighborhood. It’s nice to have the people you love the most close to you, if not closest.
But it’s also nice, albeit nice in a different way, when you see them fly off on their own. Soar in fact. When you hear how happy they are and how engaged. When they share how much fun they’re having, and how much they’re learning and growing.
At least that’s how I feel when I hear it.
I miss her. I’d be lying if I said that wasn’t true. I know she’ll be back – at some point for some time – but I miss her.
I could close the door and pretend she’s still here. But I don’t. I enjoy the open door – and the texts, calls, and snapchats. I’m in the “open door” phase of my life again. It gets more and more normal every day.
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