Wednesday, July 6, 2011

My Traveling Companion

Riding east on the WestCoast Express June/2011

I have been trying to compose an appropriately poignant post about my daughter, about the great depth of feeling I have for her and the rewards and trials of being a parent. But the time moves so quickly and I find I barely have time to think the whole post through, I am in the trenches as it were just living with her and enjoying it immensely. School is out now so we are on this odyssey called summer vacation wherein I try to be dedicated to near non-stop fun while still trying to work full-time. Summer, like life, is fleeting. I have never been a good playmate mom, I am impatient at best but I have always tried to just spend time with this child, slow myself down and expose her to the world in the best way I know how. In the summer that means visiting family and friends, camping, boating, riding bikes, reading and eating things we generally avoid in the off-season. I am making up for lost time I suppose. When she was 3, my husband and I split up and so began a 50/50 split of her time between us. Split straight down the middle, which was very limiting and to my mind not what I signed up for. One tries to adapt and make best use of the 50% without complaint, but it did wear on me and I felt like I got short changed until abut 18 months ago when the schedule was changed and she was with me more. Recently things changed again, and she was with me all the time and so that is what we have settled into and it feels so good to me. She is a wonderful person, not perfect but I never expected that. I feel like we have achieved the state I most desired as a parent, that we are traveling companions. She is a great traveler, she's adaptable and curious and she likes to tell stories about the things we see along the way, either from everyday life of the special trips we make like the time we just spent with my dad and stepmother. I am loading her up with interesting memories so that when she is grown and has her own kids she can look back at the crazy car trips with Mark and I and model her own childrens experiences after them as Mark and I are doing with her. She is a willing companion and I am so grateful to have her along.

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