Wednesday, May 19, 2010
she's a buggle
it seems i was just helping this girl move into her dorm room.
but this past saturday i watched her put on a cap and gown and walk across a stage to get her college diploma. truly, i've been living in a time warp.
this can't be.
but there it is. there's no holding back time. and in the end, why would we want to? we raise our children in order to help them fly on their own. and fly this one is.
please forgive me for having a proud mommy moment.
i'm thinking of this kid who, a year and a half ago, moved to cairo (yes, that's cairo, egypt) to study abroad. it was mid august, and temperatures hit about 120 degrees in the desert. upon arrival she had to find her own apartment in a city of 17 million people. she spent the next months getting sick every 5 weeks, trying to learn Arabic and do her best in classes with 3 hour commutes through the dust, chaos and traffic of a huge Middle Eastern city. even so, she not only survived, she thrived off the experience. and every summer, in between semesters, she worked her butt off - getting experience at a law office, on a political campaign and last summer, at a major network where she lived on her own in washingon d.c.
so now she's off to a new job on her own. and i'm experiencing a mixture of regular mom worries and just...........happiness. to know your kid has learned everything you taught them. and then some. and to know it's their chance to show you how they plan to live in this world.
thinking back, i realize her push to independence came early. one day, when she was about 3 she insisting on pouring her own juice from the pitcher into a cup. when i tried to take it away she persisted. holding up her little hand to my face, she announced,
"Mamma, I can do this by myself. I'm a buggle."
not understanding her, I said, "what?"
and she repeated, "I'm a BUGGLE!!"
as she continued to struggle with the juice container i tried to parse out what she was trying to tell me when she repeated it one more time. suddenly the meaning of those toddler words slurred together became clear:
"Mom. I can do this by myself. I'm a BIGGIRL now!"
oh yes you are. but no matter where you go or what you accomplish in life, i will see you in that misshapen pink flowered sundress you wore to death, wisps of hair bound together in purple hair bands, determined stance, fists balled on your hips. that 'don't mess with me' look on your face.
yes, you most certainly are a big girl now. but you will forever be that little girl in my heart.