Sweet Stories: Saying Goodbye.
Over the past four months I was blessed with having all three of my grown boys at home, even my oldest son whose twenty-five and has spent the last seven years traveling the world.
Below are a couple conversations we had about his next adventure.
Six Months Ago
Ronnie: I think I will stay in Croatia for a while.
Me: Croatia! Where is Croatia? I have never heard of it. It sounds like a communist country? Is it in Russia? You don’t want to go to Russia, it’s not safe.
Ronnie: Mom, it’s not in Russia and it’s not a communist country. It’s a beautiful oceanfront tourist destination in Europe. Besides, I lived in China for three months, remember my hostel in Beijing?
Me: That may be so, but you were under the care of a University in China. Who do you know in Croatia? What are you going to do there? It sounds sketchy.
Sam: Mom, you think everything sounds sketchy…
Me: Everything IS sketchy.
Fast forward to two weeks ago.
Ronnie: I have my ticket to Croatia. After I spend a few weeks there I’m going to Estonia.
Me: Astonia! Where is Astonia? It sounds like a make believe land in a movie. I can’t even find it on a map.
Ronnie: Look, it’s right here.
Me: Oh Estonia… I thought you said Astonia.
Cedrone: I thought he said Astonia too.
Ronnie: I said Estonia (sounds like Astonia).
Me: Whatever. Let me see that map. Ooohh it looks cold.
Ronnie: It is cold.
Me: I just thought I’d point that out in case you didn’t know.
Ronnie: I do know.
Me: Who do you know in “E” stonia? What are you going to do there.
Ronnie: I’m going to register my online business.
Me: What? You’re a drifter who’s going to let you register a business with no residential address? I’ve never heard of such a thing. What’s it in for them? How much money do they want? How long do you have to live there?
Ronnie: Mom, it’s really a thing. Estonia is the first country to offer programs for online entrepreneurs to register their business with no legal residency. Look, I can register as a Digital Nomad.
Me: Let me see that. Wow. “Digital Nomad” does sound better than drifter.
Ronnie: Thanks a lot.
Me: Just sayin…
Being a Mother is the hardest job in the world because it means the inevitable, saying goodbye.
As I pulled away from dropping him off at JFK for his flight to Croatia I got a little teary. But I was proud of the fact that he knows what he wants and how to go get it. I also felt like I must have had something to do with his adventurous spirit and resourceful attitude.
Being a mother also means saying and hearing things you never thought you’d say and hear, like “hostel in Beijing,” “I think I’ll stay in Croatia,” “I’m registering as a Digital Nomad in Estonia.” Or “Where is Croatia?” “Where is Estonia,” “You’re a drifter.” It also means putting aside your often misguided preconceived notions and keeping an open mind while allowing your children to think outside of the box.
I think you can officially say you have succeeded at your job as a mother when you have raised an independent individual who can function on their own among society and is ready to take on the world. I also think you’ve succeeded when your child is respectful enough to answer berating parental questions even though they’re grown and don’t actually have to.
See More of my year with the boys and Sweet Stories
To my three sons;
Follow Adventure wherever it leads.
For happiness is what your heart needs.
Climb a mountain as high as can be.
Jump in the water and swim out to sea.
Ride a race car around the track.
Have so much fun you may never come back.
Fly in a plane across the sky.
Watch out the window as the world passes by.
In a train and across the valley.
Through a city and down an alley.
Around the world and back.
I hope you didn’t forget your lunch sack.
I sure do wish you had lots of laughs.
Please send many photographs!
Adventure awaits but don’t forget me.
I’m your biggest fan wait and see.
Some Great Parenting Books.
My personal parenting belief is that a child should be allowed to express their individuality and assert their independence. I have started my own parenting book but in the meantime I love these ones below.