Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Take a Deep Breath and Let Go

This has been my last view of Vicki the past three school mornings:

And it's killing me.

I distinctly remember riding my bike to school by myself as early as second grade. And I’m pretty sure we lived farther from my elementary school than we do from the girls’ school now.  And I'm pretty sure my parents didn't drive by the school at 8:30 every morning to make sure my bike was there (not that I'm doing that, of course.  Of course not.)

So why is it so hard for me to let Vicki ride her bike to school by herself?

She’s nine, she’s in the 4th grade, she’s responsible and careful and smart. I know she’ll be fine. Intellectually, I know that.  But that doesn't stop a part of me from being terrified that she'll crash or be hit by a car or snatched by some crazy person with nothing good in mind (I checked, though - there are no registered sex offenders anywhere near our on-the-way-to-school route.)  But we're friendly with several people on the way to school, and I know of at least three who are pretty much always looking out their windows as we go by in the morning.  They'll keep an eye on her for me.  And school is not that far away.

One day she’s going to drive herself to the mall. She’s going to go away to college, get married, maybe even move several states or even an ocean away. One day all that will happen. I even want it to happen (not too soon, though!) because I want her to live a full life and be happy, and me holding on to her isn’t going to help with that.

It’s hard to let go, but I guess the good news is now I’ve done it; it won’t be so hard the next time. Maybe that’s not good news for Vicki (someone has to pave the way), but her sisters will appreciate it!


  1. You are lucky. We have three registered sex offenders in our complex. Please can we move?

    On a happier note - I loved riding my bike to school. I'm sure Vicki is doing as well at that as she does at everything else.

  2. Em, you guys really do need to move. Every time you tell me about where you live it freaks me out just a little bit more. Move to Portland. Please?

  3. It is definitely on the list. But this stupid economy is not helping things much. The Ebert in me is having a hard time with such ambiguity.

  4. Oh the pain we experience over our fist child. I feel the same way. I will be completely horrified the first time Liza wants to do it. Good for you. I know who I will be talking to when we get to that point. You are going to have to talk me through it.


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