Early this week, my baby flew the nest and I’m still dealing with the silence in the home. Separation anxiety is real. It’s not just me who is affected. In fact, more than me, it’s my son who is finding it hard to adjust to his sister’s absence.
This isn’t meant to come as a shock to me because all my life I’ve done nothing but prepare for the days when my babies will grow up and leave the home to use the wings that I hope I have given them, but it did punch a good one in the gut as the time dawned. Seeing her suitcases being loaded into the car choked me.
Goodbyes are hard for me as I wear my emotions on my sleeve. At the airport, she tried hard to comfort and hold me as I sobbed into her freshly washed hair at the airport. It smelt nice, actually. Of course it would. She used my shampoo! Then, the thought of that immediately led to another that made me burst into tears. Who will be going into my bathroom to nick my shampoo? My thought process was not rational.
I stood as near to the door as possible as she went through baggage screening then waved the final goodbye as she went to the check-in counter. That’s when I couldn’t stop crying. I think for me it was more emotional to watch the siblings saying goodbye to each other.
All the way home from the airport, neither my son nor I spoke. There seemed no need for small talk, all of us in the car lost in our own thoughts until the phone pelted out the ringtone assigned to her. She was calling to say she had checked in and was now waiting to board the plane. I imagined her sitting in one of the seats, wondering if she had secured her passport and boarding pass, if she had all her belongings with her then stopped thinking abruptly without voicing all this.
Wings, Kamal, wings! Let her fly.
I hope I’ve done everything in my power to enable her to start off this journey. I hope she finds her niche and develops into whom she’s meant to be. I hope she succeeds at everything she does. The past few months before her departure were very trying due to unforeseen circumstances, but despite the stress we, as a family, came out of it because of the support system we have within, despite the telling off and getting annoyed at the stupid inconvenience of it all.
I have never claimed to be the perfect mother. I am not. I’ve just tried my level best to be a good mother and I hope my children recognise that. All I want for them is to be educated properly and stand on their own two feet without ever thinking that it’s okay to live off handouts. An education is all I can give them – my life is dedicated to that goal. There are days when I’m riddled with self doubt, when I feel like throwing in the towel, then I stop. I didn’t come this far to give up on anything, and especially not my children. The day I chose to have sole custody, I had already decided that they’re fully my responsibility.
Along the way, I’ve had a lot of genuine love and support from a lot of people and for that I remain grateful. It really does take a village to bring up your children properly.
To my darling babies, I apologise for not being textbook perfect. Between fighting my own battles and trying my best to give you all the attention and love that you wanted and rightfully deserve, I may have fallen short along the way. For that, I’m very sorry but I want you to know I’ll have your back until my last breath.
Here’s to my little big baby. Go forth and prosper. May the force be with you. 🖖🏻