My mom had eight kids, traveled around the world as an army wife, and then, in retirement, moved back and forth around the country with one of my sisters and her family. One of the things she always told me was that the price of raising independent kids was seeing them go and BE independent. Well, that’s pretty much how I raised my kids. l told them frequently, as they grew older and were wondering what to do with their lives, that there was a whole country out there–go and see it, for goodness sake! So….they did, and they have.
Handsome Husband and I spent a wonderful two weeks with our sons in Sedona-we did hiking aplenty (I wore my pink sandals out, oh no!), saw the sights, took plenty of pictures.
Both of us were getting impatient to get back on the road again and continue our adventures, but it was tough saying goodbye to our sons. And yet, so much of my philosophy has matured–life is full of goodbyes of one sort or another, isn’t it? Goodbye to jobs,to kids when they grow up, to siblings when they move, to parents when they die. Every goodbye can cause a heart-tug, and it always does with me, but I’m practicing the Buddhist principal of detachment as well as I can. Not that it doesn’t still cause that tug, but really and truly remembering that ALL of life is inconstant, and the only one thing we can always count on is that change will happen, and it is our choice as to how we react. Even if Handsome Husband and I chose to settle in Sedona, to be near our sons, they are at the time in their lives when they are in transition. The older one, Snads, (in the bottom picture) is headed for Phoenix in the fall, and Nick, our younger, is returning to the East Coast, and New England, in the fall. (He’s a Jersey boy through and through!). I would have had to say goodbye at some point no matter what. Is it easier to be the one leaving, or the leftee? Handsome Husband always said, when he was active duty and going TDY (military trips) all the time, that it is always harder to be left behind, because the leaving one is going into a new situation, with new surroundings to be interested in, while the one left behind has that empty space. I tend to agree with him. So, here we are, saying goodbye to the boys, trusting that they know how to make good choices in their lives, and getting back on the road. After a full day of traveling, including going to Mesa Verde to see the cliff dwellers, I’m here in Durango, CO. Mixed feelings being here–my brother Kysa was living here when he became ill and died so many years ago, and another brother who is estranged. But this is a new day and a new experience. I’m here with the man I love, and new memories to be made.