Sunday, May 29, 2011

Our babies take flight

In the past week, so many things have changed.

Our oldest daughter has moved, and will be attending graduate school, our youngest has graduated from preschool, and as of tonight, our middle daughter has graduated from high school.

How's that for a busy week? 
I always say that I could not possibly have more wonderful children. It's true.

They are all beautiful, smart, funny, clever, kind, sharp, witty and talented.

For the week preceding graduation, Clementine told me in solemn, quiet  tones that  she did not want to graduate and leave her friends. She loves her teachers, and didn't want to leave them either. She insisted that she didn't want to leave the goldfish or the butterflies, or the ladybugs, or anything at her school.

We tried to reason with her.

But your new school with have those things and so many more, and you loved it when we visited. She did not want to hear this.  

Your teacher is retiring this year, so even if you were there next year, she wouldn't be. Clementine did not want to hear this, either. No thanks.

from here

So we told her that we knew that moving was scary and that leaving was scary. But that if we never moved, we'd never see or do anything new. That she couldn't read well at the beginning of the year, but she could now, and she needed to move to a new school to get a new teacher who could teach her even more. And that we'd make sure she saw her friends and got to make new ones.

That seemed to help, at least a bit. But she still didn't want to go, and the night before, told me that she was afraid to go. I held her and we hugged. Dan held her and they hugged. She decided she would try to go after all.

The next day, she went to school and bravely walked across to get her diploma. She was happy to see her teachers and her friends. She was happy to have graduated.

We were so proud. She is so brave.

As we were proud last night when Caroline graduated from high school. She was accepted into the college of her choice, and will be attending in the fall. It requires a little bit of travel, and this is the first time she'll be living away from home for any period of time. We could not be prouder or happier that she is getting this opportunity. She has always been our sunniest child, and I hope that the students and faculty at her new school know just how lucky they are to get to see her every day.

And we are so proud of our oldest. She is going to be going to graduate school and has a job working with children, the most important sort of work there is. She has always been my toughest-yet-most-tender, always helpful, pragmatic, and sensible in the best way possible. She is funny, wry, and loyal.

I consider myself the luckiest mommy in the world, because anything I can say about any one of my daughters I can proudly say about all of them.

Our daughters are the never-ending joys of our lives and we are so proud and happy and blessed to be their parents.

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