I woke up knowing that I had been clenching my teeth again. (I used to clench so badly I made cracks in them and would wake up with headaches.) At least this morning, no headache.

Last night I read my daughter’s blog and read what pain she had been through yesterday.* I had even talked to her afterward and she hadn’t shared it.  I felt sad for her and unneeded. Her friend had walked her through her visit to social services and the stigma and emotions that go along with that ride. (I remember asking for help. I went there once after my divorce, encouraged by a friend, and was denied!)

We have been so close for the last ten years, especially the last six when she moved across the continent. Bless free technology!

Now she has a close friend who herself went through the trauma of divorce a year and a half earlier.

I’m glad she has a close friend who understands.

Ah yes, perspective!

I’m even more glad that she has a close relationship with God.

I knew that at some point she would have to make closer friends than me. I won’t always be here.

I know that, and yet, I was so enjoying our friendship. I had finally gotten past the parenting role where friendship is sketchy at best.

I don’t do friends easily–trust issues from childhood–and was so enjoying the full range of comfort in a real, true friendship. And I feel like I just lost my best friend.

Did I risk too much? Did I go back into parenting too far by saying what I knew to be true? I know she didn’t want to hear it. But I wasn’t judgmental.

One of the first things she said after deciding to separate was, “I’m so glad you’ve been over this road.”

I was too, for her sake, I could be there for her, help balance the highs and lows. Now she doesn’t need me.

So that’s the feeling. Maybe I need to do what good old Bowen (Family Systems Theory) said about distancers and pursuers, and just step back.

That is what I’ve been doing for a week, since I was there and she didn’t seem to want to spend time with me.

I’ve wanted to call at different times just to see how she is, and I have resisted. She did call.

Another time when it got awkward on the phone we hung up and afterwards I thought, I should have done what she has in the past, and say, “Ok, what? I just heard your tone change. What’s going on?” She wouldn’t let me hide!

Why is it that parenting gets harder in some ways when you think it should get easier?

Maybe love never gets easy. It always stretches you. Always demands you look at yourself and your part. Feels the pain of the beloved. Requires strength for truth and honesty.

Can we ever get comfortable?

Only with God, I guess. Yeah? Relationship with Him isn’t even easy! But it’s good!

And as He has been telling me a lot in the last two weeks, “I will always be here. I will never leave. I will always love you. You are her mother. She’ll be back.”

Thanks, Daddy. Thank you for this love, for making me capable of it, even when it hurts. Thanks that some day it won’t involve pain and suffering to love.



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