I am seriously going to live in Italy. I’m not just saying that. I’ve already warned my children, they will have to fly the ocean in a silver plane to come and see me and their old Dad…once we get them all settled in their happy American Life. This could take awhile….Sunny’s only 5. It’s definitely not what most retired-ish parents do. It could be a terrible idea. But don’t you just love those? Either way, we need to make sure these kids are off to a good start first.
But once we’re sure they are ok…Ciao! and Grazie! and old guys sitting around reading the paper in streets older than my great great Grandpa. And crazy car rides through the winding countryside, where speed limits and traffic laws are really just a suggestion.
What does OK mean? I’m not really sure. Hopefully we will be able to recognize the signs that they don’t need us anymore:
Hey Mom..I can’t come home this weekend..got stuff with friends.
Hey Mom and Dad..we just bought a new house! ..(need help?) Ummm..no..we bought it all by ourselves.
Hey Mom, thanks, but I think we’re gonna try Christmas morning at our house this year. You know, so the kids can wake up in their own house that morning.
I don’t know, just guessing what it might look like. And, I’m not saying they won’t always need us. I am 40, (yikes) and I still need my Mom. Her solid take-it-to-the-bank advice is something I depend on. Especially now that I have kids. Evidently I inherited my Dad’s worry-wart gene.
Mom says that she would ask, nearly every morning over coffee..”Well, Marlin. What are we going to worry about today?” It was her way of opening up conversation with Dad. He always had a response…something that he was turning over in his mind like a well-worn stone. It was often about us kids..or his ability to be the best Dad/husband he could be.
I wonder if my anxious thoughts feel like de ja vu’ to my Mom. I spill them out…and she always clears them up. She has some old standby statements that she uses:
Lisa..think..how important will this be in 10 years?
What’s the worst thing that could happen?
Have you talked to God about this yet? Remember, he’s your co-pilot.
Oh, honey. Just smile and be yourself.
Well, if you don’t have a choice..do it (whatever the unpleasant thing is) joyfully.
I see that as our children grow…they need more of these kinds of words. And less of us being there physically for them. My 5-year old needs me to keep him from danger. My 12-year-old needs that too, but less and less. More often than not, she needs wise words like my husband gave her recently..I don’t care what you want to do. I just want you to be the best you can be at it. Pick something..and then go do your best. If they put you in the outfield..then be the best outfielder there is. (Fastpitch Softball jargon)
I guess I don’t know when the day will come. When me and Edward decide to go all Under The Tuscan Sun, and move to our beloved Cortona. But I love the idea. But I also love that we aren’t there yet. It’s fun, getting to be the advice-giver for a change. After dropping aforementioned daughter off at a camp where she knew no one..I got to use the famous..Oh honey, just smile and be yourself line. It was cool.
So, our grandchildren may have to schlep themselves all the way to Cortona to get their Christmas presents. I don’t know…it seems a little crazy.
P.S. Terrible ideas. Don’t you just love those?