As a parent I think we all expect to be pushed away as our children turn into teenagers, sometimes even at the pre-teen stages. I was ready for that. Well, maybe I was and maybe I wasn’t. What I didn’t expect was the absolute cut off of all contact from my firstborn. What just happened?
We hadn’t argued or anything. When I dropped her off at university this last Fall, she was somewhat distant, but I attributed it to nerves from having her best friend graduate and move to another state for graduate school and also her significant other not return to campus because of COVID. I tried not to be hurt as she told me I could go.
Later in the Fall, I sent her a package of treats. I thought she had left a single word message on my phone (turns out it was child #4! They sound too much alike!) and so I called her back. We chatted and all was good. That was our last conversation.
Since then the only communication that she has answered is direct questions about tax information or money through messages. That’s it and it’s not like those were more than a few word answers.
So, Thursday children #s 2, 4, and I (#3 had school) made the about 3-hour trip up to her university to see her. She wouldn’t come out to see us and, as an adult, she can’t be coerced into doing so. I was so hurt! We had brought some yummy treats for her, but she refused to communicate.
So, I made the painful decision to wish her farewell (fare thee well) until she can find her path and decides to communicate again. I can’t force her to love me, like I could get her to eat her broccoli with the threat of no dessert when she was a child. I miss the simpler times.
Now, at age 22, she must stand on her own two feet. For better or worse, she will adult… without me. Don’t get me wrong…I do believe kids need to grow into adults and move on with their lives. It’s just that I also know it’s easier with the backing of their families…not to mention way less painful for said families.
It’s her decision; not mine. I wish her the very best and the knowledge that I will always pray for her and welcome her home if she needs it. Love doesn’t stop growing because a child decides to leave.
Love can be wounded, but never dies. My prayers to you always, dear one.