Saturday, 10 March 2012

When do you feel grown up?

I read a blog today where the lady said she only felt grown up after her mother died aged 106, and she was 73!! This is amazing to realise that there are other people out there who do not feel grown up despite their age, its not just me then!!

This lady had had a very very close, maybe stifling relationship with her mother, but she loved her dearly despite the mother interfering all her life in whatever she did, as she kept saying' Mother Knows Best!!' Well, of course she does whilst one is a child, but definitely not after you grow to adult hood and have got a whole load of new and different experiences from your parent..

One of the most joyful things for me is seeing how far and fast my children have flown in their lives, in their careers and in their relationships.. all having a good base from which to set off from. They all know that whatever they do is going to be fine with me, as I trust their judgement and its their road to travel When my daughter announced she was going to live in Canada and start a new life with her husband and son, I encouraged them and made all the right noises despite my heart sinking and feeling sad. When we said goodbye before they left, I cried all the way to the motorway taking me home, but she never saw that either* Same when my son decided he was going to live in Australia, it was his life and his road, and I must live with their decisions..
I, too had parents living far into their years, into their 80's and when my daughter set off for Canada, my parents knew it was probably the last time they would see her in this life, but they never said 'don't go,' they were happy for her in her new exciting life challenge. As a parent, you love and guide your children, but you certainly do not own them at all. They are lent to you to carry the family further and your future is in them.

Despite my having all these grandchildren, I still feel so not grown up its a bit worrying... what does it mean Grown up? Does it mean that your decisions are the only ones, that you take no prisoners, that you are sure that you are right in all things.. that you know everything.. cos that is not me at all!! I learn from my children , its amazing what knowledge they have given me and I love to talk and hear their ideas as I do from my grandchildren now that they are also becoming more grown up* I love learning new things from them all the time..
When I was first a mother I never understood how the earlier generations were so autocratic in their views, particularly the men... How could they really lay the law down at the same age I was, when I knew that I knew very little and would never have dared to be so insistent that my wishes be carried out to the letter.. Of course as the children grew and became more vocal there were  times when you had to insist they follow your rules... but these rules were made for their safety not out of a wish to dominate at all! 

Being grown up to me, means wearing lipstick. high heels and stockings, smoking cigarettes if you wish, having cocktails in the evening, or going out to cocktail parties, being sure of your  knowledge and place in society.. knowing fine wines, the best cheeses, the best food, how to cook it and how to savour it all..

Well, I did wear high heels, I never wore lipstick, do not smoke, rarely have cocktails, and I still feel much too young to really have an opinion.. When I hear love songs in all their angst, I am still waiting for my knight in shining armour on a white horse to come and rescue me from the doldrums, which I am sure is not really right for a woman of my certain age ha ha

When I used to ask my mother' how does it feel to be old?', she would reply that she was never going to get old, and she never did! She stayed as young as she felt forever and I guess I am going to do that too, so I might as well give up waiting for this process called being grown up, hadn't I ? What a relief!!

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