I’d been asleep for an hour… my oldest waking me at midnight to tell me she’d arrived home. There’d been hydroplaning… lightning… she was home safe after a not-so-pleasant slow drive home from her friend’s house.
I lay there awake… questioning how I could have slept through. Wondering what I’ll be oblivious to next year when she goes off on her own. Will I worry less from knowing… or not? Maybe not knowing where she is… who she’s with… when she arrives home… will cause much more discomfort than I feel now.
Have I done enough to get her to this point? Have I hovered? Will she be so thrilled to break from my grip that I’ve gone too far… and she’ll push her limits? I’m the parent whose asked… followed up… not allowed… grounded. I’ve known most things… researched… checked. Has it been too much?
Being a mom is incredibly rewarding. I’m comfortable in my mom skin… and yet… so very uncomfortable. Each child requiring a different set of rules to match their personalities and needs. I can’t read minds… though I’ve tried. I’m wrong… a lot. I’d rather be wrong… than oblivious. I apologize. I ask questions I sometimes don’t want to know the answers to… and often I don’t ask questions at all because asking might make them uncomfortable. Their privacy is more important than my knowing.
I reach for the remote to find my youngest asleep next to me. The glow from the television revealing a smile on her tiny face. I’ve one about to leave the nest and two others years away from releasing themselves from my grip.
She’s not ready to go it alone… I’m not… she can’t be.
There was a time the television would stop… the day would end… you’d be forced to turn it off or awake to the static. Not anymore. It continues well into the night… into the morning… endlessly.