Thursday, July 5, 2012

New Passage in Life

This week our children got together for vacation. One lives in Chicago; the other in Oklahoma City. We are in between, but 45 minutes south of the most direct road between them. This is the second time they've come together. The previous time Charles (and maybe Bis) went to Oklahoma City to see Richard and Sara. This time R&S loaded up their two sons, left the cats in good hands, and made the thirteen hour drive to the northeast. Reports we are seeing on Facebook and hear on the telephone indicate it's going well. Although 4 and 1 year-olds haven't yet grasped the concept of sleeping in while on vacation.

This is a new passage for Lynda and me in that we are not involved in our adult children's vacation. They are getting together without us. Prior year Thanksgiving celebrations have been at our house, with one or both of the kids coming from east and west to gather. We've driven both ways with some frequency, more often to OKC than to Chi-town. But this time they made their plans and didn't ask us to join them.

And that's fine with me. Each year results in a little further distance for them from the nest. The empty nest seems a little emptier. But we survive, and our children march on into a greater distance from their upbringing. That's the way of the world. In The Winds of War, when Warren Henry complained that his family had become a bunch of tumbleweeds scattered by the winds of war, his very wise fiancee, Janet Lacouture, countered yes, and in the scattering new families resulted.

We hope life will give us many years of visits to and from children, grandchildren, in-laws. Maybe next year we can plan to exchange our timeshare in Branson for another week in Branson. We'll drive a mere two hours northeast, cars will leave Chicago and Oklahoma City at the appointed time, and we can all have fun in a fun city. I'll look for situations to put into stories and books, and we'll all relax in the rush of vacation activities. I suppose that's an oxymoron.

Sometimes tumbleweeds all blow out of the same hedgerow and are caught at the same fence, not terribly far away.

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