So Long, Chicken…

Squish, pinkening nicely in the heat. 

Yesterday was Opening Day for soccer, and tomorrow morning, Chicken is leaving.  Today was sort of a lazy, doughnut kind of day, with a venturing out into the cauldron of hell that IS Sacramento so we could meet grandparents and Chicken could get one last chance to socialize with family.

We came home and watched Ferris Buehler’s Day Off–and Mate made a really impressive observation:

Remember the part where Cameron does the impression of Sloane Peterson’s father? He gets the deep voice and pretends to be a real fucking prick?

Yeah.  Mate was watching it tonight and he said, “You know he gets that from listening to his own father on the phone.”

And as goofy/fantasy oriented as that movie is, that was an important thing right there.

Because it’s no less true today.

My children and parents, happy after Chinese Food
and catching up. 

We’re sending our Chicken out into the world tomorrow.  She has no school to attend, and she’s going to be searching for employment in a really competitive market.  She’s terrified. She wants to get a job, she thinks she can get a job, but she’s not sure. She has all of the scaredy girl things that I had when I was a kid.  What if I fail? What if I can’t do it? People try to get this job/pass college/enter the arts fields all the time– what makes me special?

And I worry– what would Cameron’s father think if he heard Cameron on the phone? Would he be proud that his son assumes he’s an unmitigated asshole who’s every utterance is meant to inspire hatred and fear?

What have I passed on to my daughter besides an emerging sense of self worth and critical thinking skills and a love of the arts and some stunning red hair?

Well, it must be something wonderful. It must be. Because she loved it at home. She was safe, and we fed her doughnuts when she asked, and movies were sacred and mom was here to talk to and she loves her siblings intensely.

But I must have taught her something. I must have.

Because in spite of all the fears and in spite of knowing that home doesn’t suckā€¦

She’s going back to her apartment in San Diego tomorrow, armed with a laptop and a volunteer job and plans to find more things.

She says it’s for the shower that she’ll get to herself–but I like to think it’s more.

I like to think that there’s a little bit of fearlessness in her, and some confidence too. I like to think that she’ll wake up someday and think, “Oh my God! My life may not have followed the path I planned, but by golly, it followed a path I loved!”

It would be the best going away gift I could give her, if I could give her that. It would be the best parting gift I could get, if she could give it back.

May we all raise fearless, generous daughters and compassionate, brave sons.  Let them conquer their fears instead of the world, and accept diversity, defeat, and the joy of life’s eternal struggle.

Let us see the best in them, and know that if we gave that to our children, we gave them something grand.

My my little girl travel safely and sally forth into adulthood with a lot of confidence and a little luck.

Holy Goddess, merciful God, so may it be.


0 thoughts on “So Long, Chicken…”

  1. Unknown says:

    May the Wings of the Merciful enfold your chick as she fledges the nest, Amy. The skies are vast and her wings are tiny, but she has the heart of an eagle and the fire of the Phoenix. She'll be just fine.

  2. Unknown says:

    As Mother of 3 grown children and a Grandma of 4…your babies leaving the nest is never easy. The first one is the hardest. By the time the last one's time comes around…you're helping get them out that door. I value the quiet now. Really.

    Both of our girls stumbled and had to return home after moving out, several times. Yet the boy flew off and soared, never needing to move back home. I'm also very lucky in that all of my kids & grandkids live here in town near us.

    Just bask in the knowledge that you have sent Chicken off into the world with so much love & support. You've done well. It's her time to soar now.

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