Remember that show ‘Kids Say the Darndest Things?” Well, if you do, you are dating yourself, but nonetheless, I remember it from my youth. It was cute little ones, saying cute and sometimes outrageous things. Now, my kids are grown up and how that happened in just the blink of an eye is utterly beyond me. And, now they do the damndest things.
Take my amazing 23 year old daughter, Nell, for example. She is the chef this summer on a private charter yacht in Southeast Alaska. That is outrageous for starters. But, not the point of this, really. This week she managed to slice her hand open with a fish filleting knife while in the wilds of SE Alaska. This was not your average ouch-I-cut-my-finger happening — she has had plenty of those in her culinary career — this was a wow-we-have-to-get-you-stitches-NOW happening. Float plane called by captain on the radio, Nell flown to Sitka, stitched up and flown back to the boat. All good, yes. But, happening miles and miles away from her mama. Cell phone conversations in emergency room. Very calm and collected daughter. Very stressed and sad mama. Daughter concerned about meals having to happen on the boat without her. Mama concerned that daughter is alone.
My children have grown up. Sometimes I believe they have done so in spite of me and my mama shenanigans. It is totally impossible for me to stop being their mama. It is out of the realm of possibility that I could be anything but fretful during this experience of Nell’s, despite her mature and composed demeanor throughout the entire thing.
Kids grow up. And they do the damndest things. And sometimes far away from their mama. Sigh. Why did no one ever tell me about what it would look like to be the mama of grown kids off in the big wide world? In fact, now that I mention it, no one ever gave me the map for this wild ride at all! But, despite floundering through it day-to-day all these years, it still remains my most treasured path. And my children still my cohorts in this crazy-beautiful-heartfelt course.