July 21, 2014 § 9 Comments
Nate took the boys on a five-day wilderness canoe-camping and fishing trip a couple hours north of Montreal. Fin and Rye are 12 and 9, respectively, and they went unhesitatingly, excitedly. They have never before been away from us for more than 24 hours. They will have no contact with us before their return. They will live in a wall tent and eat what they catch and probably not see another human until they emerge from the wild.
Penny and I watched them pull out the driveway yesterday morning, shed a few inevitable tears, and then did what I presume any long-married couple would do when suddenly liberated from their children: Lugged the carcass of the pig we’d killed the day prior into the kitchen and took up our knives. It was a welcome distraction.
I hear parents talk about “letting go” of their children. I may even have used such language before. But don’t kid yourself: We’re not letting go of them. They’re letting go of us.
As usual, we only think we’re in control.