Thursday, July 19, 2007

OK – so last night I’m writing my block for my 365 day Challenge Quilt, Eric sits down beside me. He talking with his dad about the day—it’s about 7:30 at night. All of the sudden, he stops mid-sentence, “Hey - this is pretty cool… what is this?”

A Quilt Moment…..I went on to explain about how there’s a block for each day, I’m recording the temperatures, Prices of movie tickets, gas, a loaf of bread, milk.--Talking about everyday things like movies, Ransom, and conversations I have with family. I told him it started out as a project marking Chelsey’s Senior year, but Chelsey has turned out to be pretty much “anti family” this summer, so it’s a document of my life for a year.
“This is pretty neat, think about what it’ll mean looking back in a few years…”
“Eric – there’s hope for you yet---“
“Mom—I’m really into to the quilting thing…. If it weren’t for the sewing part…”

What?!?!?!I think he meant he appreciates them, just wouldn’t ever make one… we’ll go with that thought.

Chelsey anti-family? I think those are pretty tough words. She’s just busy with her life, working, cheerleading practice, and friends. Don says make a list of expectations—chores around the house—and as long as they’re done, her free time is hers. “Mel, you can’t ground her into hanging out with you… Mel, you need to find a new friend”.

At first, when she started this I was devastated, but we’ve kind of gotten a new routine established. Don points out for me to remember when a couple of Chelsey’s girlfriends Moms went through the same thing when their daughters hung out at our house all the time. I felt so lucky that they were at my house. Well, now I’m paying the Piper.

Again—whether I’m trying to convince someone else or maybe myself—You can't force the issue, but I won’t stop living either….dwelling on it won’t change anything, and I’m not losing a summer over it. Don said, “ God is preparing us for her to go to college…” Chelsey is in the world... the world doesn't revolve around Chelsey...

Me—I want the old Chelsey back…


Patti said...

It's so hard sometimes when they are growing up. And so hard to let go. And so hard to get used to them being gone.

Eventually is does get better - even though right now it seems like it never will.

Carolyn said...

My 17 year old is going through the same thing. She'd rather be anywhere but at home and is quite vocal about it. She can be very sweet or absolutely nasty. I'm learning to not take it personally. My son went through something similar at this age...he spent a lot of time with friends and hated to be home. He just didn't hate us so much! I'm hoping that when she goes away to school, if she does, she will learn to appreciate home the way my son did.

I so enjoy spending time with him now. We're driving down near his school today and meeting him for youngest and I need an "Andrew fix" as we haven't seen him in a few weeks. You'll get through this and will appreciate your relationship with her as it changes when she goes to school.

God IS preparing us for the change coming...have faith that all will be well. There is a plan and all of this is natural, even though it hurts like crazy now!

Tazzie said...

I feel and live what you're saying. Though Amy's not the same age yet, I find it so hard accepting that she's growing older and wanting her own space, and wanting to make her own way. I want the little Amy back again, but also want her to be the best she can be. Sometimes it's heartbreaking being a Mum. We'll support each other thru hon.

Rose said...

Everyday my daughter gets further away.....i hold on, life draws her forward.......i hate it!!! i want my little girl back!!! i just try and grow 'with" her but i really didnt "sign up" for a teenager when i wanted a baby lol.......she is a gorgeous girl (inside and out) and i hope that she stays true to herself and thats she always loves her mum and dad and her little brother!!!

susan said...

Love your 365 project! Just when you think there is no hope for the kids, they give you a glimmer - out of the mouths of babes as it were.

I read a poem online this morning, and now it reminds me of you:

To a Daughter Leaving Home by Linda Pastan

When I taught you
at eight to ride
a bicycle, loping along
beside you
as you wobbled away
on two round wheels,
my own mouth rounding
in surprise when you pulled
ahead down the curved
path of the park,
I kept waiting
for the thud
of your crash as I
sprinted to catch up,
while you grew
smaller, more breakable
with distance,
pumping, pumping
for your life, screaming
with laughter,
the hair flapping
behind you like a
handkerchief waving

found here

Have a great day! And remember there is life after kids, we call it PK (used to be pre-kids, now it is post-kids!)

anne bebbington said...

I sympathise totally Mel - just occasionally I get flashes of the same from Sarah - it saddens me of course you want them to develop their independence but not at the expense of their relationship with you :o) (((hugs)))

Darlene said...

Trust me when I tell you that your Chelsey will be back. Like you, I thought I'd 'lost' my friend, Kris (my DD) but she's an incredible adult and mom now and is 'back'. As I like to say "this too shall pass".

And, you should hear my DS, Steven talk about quilting. He loves it (no, he'd never make one, either) but thinks it's really cool. He, too is an adult now with children of his own and still 'gets it'. LOL

Libby said...

I know it's hard to believe . . . but it really does get better. I have to echo the others and say this is all away to make the separation a little softer when they leave.
I had a mental calendar that I was putting a BIG RED X on each day when my girl getting ready to leave home . . . 10 years later, we both mark calendars counting until we get to see each other.

de vliegende koe said...

She will never leave you! She is figuring out what life’s all about. She will be back and I’m sure she appreciates when you allow her to explore the world, maybe not now, but definately later! I’ve read some more posts this week about the same issue. Take care! Your 365 is wonderful!

Nicole said...

My daughter went through that phase too. There were years when anything I suggested she do was the kiss of death. I am happy to say that she did outgrow it and now we share so many of the same interests and are as close as can be. Just know that this situation with your Chelsey will change. She is just testing her wings and learning to be an independent person.

Carole said...

Sending a cyber ((((hug)))) your way! Keep well!

Marcie said...

I started getting choked up reading all the sweet replies you rec'd. Mine echoes all the rest. We try to teach them to be independent, but it is hard to let go. I went through all that as well. Come to think of it, I think that is when I got into quilting. You have a great family and they will keep returning to you. Sending you "good vibrations"!

Norma said...

Oh, she will be back. I have a 34 year old daughter and we went through the same thing. When she got married after college and moved across town, we both were miserable. Now there are two grand kids and her job and her house and husband and we still connect almost every day. Give her time and she will find her way home, because you have 17 years invested in your relationship and in the end, it will win over everything.

Joanne said...

This is just a time in her life that she's spreading her wings a bit. She'll be back and you'll be closer than ever.

Jane Ann said...

Yeah, take it from someone who's been in the trenches, they DO come back and it's so much fun. I feel like my daughters are my best pals (so I had to laugh at your DH telling you to get a new friend!). When I drove home from taking DD#1 to college (6 hours), I sobbed the ENTIRE way. I thought I would be sick I cried so much. And it took her many years to finally come back home permanently, but she did and we are as close as ever.

Leanne said...

Sons can be so funny mine was reading my 365 and thought it would be cool for him to read it in 100 years(he is planning on living until he is 117!) Your daughter will be fine it is a stage and she will return.
I love this saying
Give your children two things
one is roots
the other,wings.

Leigh said...

Oh I loved this post.
My son was worse than my daughter,but maybe she's just not the yet. I'm sure it will come.
They can be so rotten, then out of the blue comes a hug or an I love you and you just melt.

Linda_J said...

sounds like Don is a pretty wise fellow--may not make it any easier in the meantime that he may have hit the nail on the head. I get along with my mom way much better once I was on my own as we really butt heads a lot in my teen years and early 20's if things go like our situation.

Kim said...

Poor Mel! But as I was reading, I was thinking just about the same thing Don told you. It's just the way of things, the way to prepare both of you for Chelsey to grow up and move on to college and adulthood and ease (maybe not the right word?!) you into the idea too. How special that Eric noticed what you were doing and thought it was a cool idea--not many kids would pay much attention. Just remember there's a reason and a time for everything, and sometimes you just have to go along with the larger plan and have faith it will all turn out "right."

McIrish Annie said...

You are really making progress on the 365! don't worry about your DD she will be back. Daughters are forever connected to their Moms.

I LOVe your garden! It's so you!
Hmm maybe I'll post some of my garden pics. been spending way too much time out there this year! LOL

Fiona said...

You know I also have a 17 year old and I think her life is very different from mine at that age - she has a lot more freedom and because we live in a city (I lived in the back of beyond) she can easily get around. In some ways, I feel envious of the fact that she does have that freedom to be with her friends - and think of it this way - what if she didn't have any? That might be even more worrying. It will sort itself out I'm sure.

atet said...

Way to go Eric!

Chelsea will "come back" to you -- but she needs to test some freedom. I haven't had to go through this from the mom side yet, but I've been on the teen side. Hang in there!

Your block and garden are beautiful.

ancient one said...

Your kids will be fighting over that quilt one day...ha ha. Relax about your daughter... She's normal, you're normal... Remember that old saying..."A son is a son until he takes a wife...A daughter is a daughter all of her life...(or something like that.) ~ann

Holly said...

This is the most clever idea for a quilt I have ever seen! Wow.

My daughter was the same way - but now we are really good friends! It's hard on the mom, though.

MOLLY said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
MOLLY said...

You wouldn't have it any other way. She is just growing up. I got through that period by thinking of parents with children with disabilities who never grow up. This is something that helps her become the person you want her to become. One day she will raise up and call you blessed. When she is the beautiful, independent woman you will proud to call her your daughter.

Vicky said...

Hang in there, Mom. She's just exploring the world a bit. But she knows where home is and who loves her. She won't venture far away from that!

It was so heartwarming to read of Eric's comments about quilting. You've left a legacy with him, too!


Rosemary said...

Aw,i feel your pain! My darling daughter is 16, and i dread the day she leaves for college. Shes a dancer and so much of my life also revolves around dance activities. Its gonna be hard when she leaves home.

Juliann in WA said...

Hi again
Love your blocks. Have you cut a bunch or are you just cutting as you go? What sizes are you using? Just curious.

Kathy Wagner said...

I feel for you! I know that will be happening any day with my daughter. I enjoyed seeing your 365 entries - keep up the good work!