I’ve been to New York City with my daughter. I have thought so often about writing all week, but I decided to abstain for a while just to see how it felt. I went to New York City to see how it felt too. It is in every way diametrically opposed to life here in the mountains. I am in no way saying it is bad. It is simply a sharp and dramatic contrast to everyday life as I know it.
It occurred to me that the difference might make a difference in how I felt, might be an oasis formed by coping with the differences. Both my daughter and I missed her brother, my son. We thought about how he would encourage us. We thought of the things he would like to see. We discussed our attempt at coping without him.
My daughter worked on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday. She is responsible for registration for a human resources conference. I chided her from not taking a break during the day. We went to see Phantom of The Opera. She was in tears watching the show she had seen on video as a child. I thought about how much her brother would have loved to be there with us.
By Thursday she was so exhausted she was too tired to go out to eat. We grabbed a bagel and retired to the room. She thrashed around in bed all night. We walked out a bit on Friday evening, but then again she was tired. Saturday we headed towards Macy’s and then down to the High Line. We walked and took photographs. We went to see “Wicked” at the matinee and then ate out at a little Italian restaurant where we met up with some of my first cousins children.
While she worked I visited the Metropolitan Museum of Art and Rockefeller Center. I shopped at Macy’s and watched it snow. It is not what I would call a vacation for either of us but I was afforded opportunity to learn a lot about my daughter as an adult.
I knew that she is a responsible organized person. I knew that she is intelligent and trust-worthy. She is also compassionate and generous and oh so kind to me. I felt that her brother would be very ver proud of her, as I am. He would have loved to have been with us.
I unpacked a few tears there. They seem to travel with me everywhere.
Some tears were for my daughter, for all she carries around with her inside her heart and head. I wish I could make everything easier for her, smooth all the rough edges and “fix” everything. I want to protect her and am frustrated that that is not allowed in the ways I would like to do it. I have to let her live her life and learn her own lessons.
It was an important step for both of us to undertake this journey together – both of us faced some fears and both of us found that our longing for her brother, my son, never ceases regardless of where you are and what you are doing. It is a part of our life.
I recognized only a few songs from the show “Wicked”. One at the end sung together by the two “witches” hit close to home:
So let me say before we part
So much of me
Is made from what I learned from you
You’ll be with me
Like a handprint on my heart
And now whatever way our stories end
I know you have re-written mine
By being my friend…
Like a ship blown from its mooring
By a wind off the sea
Like a seed dropped by a sky-bird
In a distant wood
Who can say if I’ve been changed for the better?
But because I knew you
Because I knew you
And I have been changed for good by my sweet children. Molded and shaped, sharp edges buffed off , inspired and encouraged and loved. Oh how wonderfully loved. Thank you darling, my sweet girl. Thank you son.