What an amazing person you are. I am so proud of you and to call myself your father. It's been 23 years ago since your mom and I were alone and on a grand adventure in Canada, in the west meadow. Which is where you and your name came from. We came home from that trip with a whole new plan. And no idea what it would entail.
Now you are a grown lady. It's hard for us to accept that you are all grown up and moving on. But that's normal I guess. We're worried that we weren't good enough parents, and that we can't take care of you anymore. And that we can't be there if you have problems, or don't feel well, or are scared and confused. We know you can do it. We may not show it very well, because we don't want to give up our job of making everything ok. It's hard for us to accept, but we'll do it in time. After your first real breath of freedom, you are going to be just fine and we will too. You are a strong, smart, talented person with a huge heart. That will go a long way in your life........................
Yesterday morning Wesley was sitting on her bed crying, reading this letter that her dad stayed up half the night to write to her. I was sitting on the back porch crying, Gerry was walking around like he had lost something and was trying to find it. Poor Lazarus was packing the car and trying to tip toe around all of the tears. Then his tears came too.
They are on their way to the west coast now. Left early yesterday morning. We finally got our act together enough to say goodbye with smiles on all of our faces. I have only seen Gerry cry three times in the 30 years I have known him. Two were when we buried beloved dogs, and then yesterday. I finally had to stop my pity party to help him get through his. We were one hot mess. I had hoped to send her off without her seeing me cry, but there was no holding back the wave after wave of tears and pain that came. I was numb with pain. Usually I can keep it together, give her support and encouragement and smile through it all. But I couldn't do a thing. Normally I would have sent her off with food, homemade muffins, a letter or card, a small gift. Nothing. I just stood there feeling like I was floating out of my body. I have never felt so helpless in my life. Child comforting parent with reassurance and hugs. First time for that....
The day did get better, I went to work, there was laughter. My best pal Laura came and took me to lunch. It was delicious, more laughter, and a weight off my shoulder as I accepted being a mom with a child living far away.
The other day I was sitting with my hard drive looking at old photos of Wes. She came in and said, Why would you do that to yourself? Why indeed..... These are some of my favorites. She was strong and happy and so talented during the time these photos were made. These were her best friends. She was in high school without a care in the world. No boyfriends, no rent due, no roommates, no meals to prepare, laundry to do. Mom and dad taking care of her. And then she went to UNCSA and spent four of the hardest years of her young life trying to survive. She came home 10 pounds thinner, ridden with anxiety and emotional instability and a new relationship. If only I could turn back the clock and give her back these moments of pure bliss. Singing on the stage at The Cat's Cradle. My beautiful child.
After they left, I found Gerry sitting on her bed, tears in his eyes. And somehow, my tears stopped. She was gone. No turning back. And so Gerry and I started making plans for things we will do. Maybe a trip to the Outer Banks this fall. We want to go to Switzerland. Maybe fly to Ca. to see Wes. Many things to look forward to, just the two of us again.
It is right and natural that a child leaves when they become an adult. Not sure how much of an adult Wesley is just yet, but she will grow up fast on this trip. They are doing many things that we would not choose to do. Driving an really old car across Texas, New Mexico and Arizona in August for one. We fear the car won't make it. We fear for a lot of things. Moving to the most expensive county in the U.S. without a job or a place to live, very little money for the trip, learning to find her way as an adult without mom and dad. Lord have mercy, why do we have to go through this growing up shit!!!
There was one thing though. Yesterday morning around 7am.....
We have a family of deer, mom, sister, aunt and baby. They come to see us everyday. Two days ago, all four of them just laid down in our backyard for about an hour. Never have seen them do this. Then yesterday morning, mom, the one we know so well, came into the yard, looked straight at us, and in that moment, it was like she was saying let go, she will be fine. I do it all the time.
And so the deer became our totem. Our spirit animal. I looked it up:
Messages and Lessons Deer Totem
If Deer has suddenly bounded into your life as a Lesson or Messenger Guide, then she's likely alerting you to the fact that you're about to encounter an event or situation that will require you to make rapid decisions, and to react swiftly and with agility to your shifting environment. But she's also cautioning you not to lose your head in the process, and to follow her example of being graceful under pressure. Doing so will enable you to be ready to employ the best action to fit the situation at hand.
She's also likely surfaced at this time in your life journey to advise you that you're entering a time in which there will be increased activity. She would suggest that you keep your eyes wide open and your ears alert so that you may make the most of the opportunities that are on their way to you, as well as to avoid any situations which would not be in your best interest to undertake.
And lastly, when Deer surfaces in your life as a Messenger or Lesson Guide, then she is asking you to take a look at your blessings. Fill your heart, your very being with a sense of deep gratitude for all of the miraculous gifts that are at work in your life. From the smallest to the largest, take inventory of those abundant riches, and then, give thanks for them, not only in words alone, but through your actions as you “pay forward” the abundance that has come into your life. In this way, you assist Deer in her important work to keep the cycle of giving, receiving, and re-gifting going.
I think that about says it all.
Travel fearlessly my little deer