Monday, May 16, 2011

The distance is quite simply much too far for me to row, It seems farther than ever before

When I was a kid, we almost always lived overseas, so my grandparents (who lived in Michigan) were always far away from me.  We loved them and loved seeing them and they were a big part of our lives, but not because we got to see them often.  We visited them when we could and they visited us, but it wasn't a relationship built upon regular interaction.  The notion of parents and their grown children living in the same city was not the model that I was exposed to.

So when I grew up, I went where school and jobs and whimsy took me.  It never occurred to me to make a serious effort to stay physically close to my parents because I didn't see it as something that people did.  At least, not something that we did.  My brothers and I are as emotionally close as we could be to our parents, but none of us lives near them. 

When I was living on the East Coast and was making plenty of money and my folks were an hour and half away by plane, I didn't think much of it. 

But then we went to Hawaii and had a baby.  And Hawaii is so, so far away from the rest of my family.  And distance is made more so by young children, who are difficult and expensive to travel with.

Denver is so much closer.  But it's still far away.  And money is so much tighter, and two small children are such a pain in the ass to travel with.

It's making me sad.

My folks were in town this weekend to hang out and visit and also to help with the kids while J is gone.  It was so wonderful to have them here.  They're such amazing grandparents - totally engaged, fun, willing and able to go out and do things.  We went to the book store.  To Target.  To the park.  To the indoor pool.  They took Zeke to the science museum.  Hosted him at their hotel for sleepovers (two nights!). 

They left this morning, so they hung out at the house until late last night.  We ordered Thai food and watched baseball and my mom and Zeke played Angry Birds on her iPad. 

And then they had to leave.  Zeke was all ready to go with them to the hotel and was very upset to learn that he would have to sleep at home without Mimi and Papa.  And that Mimi and Papa were leaving and he wouldn't see them for a couple of months.

"Why do Mimi and Papa have to go away?  Why, Mama?"

Then a few minutes later, "where are they?  What are they doing right now??"

When he woke up this morning:  "Where are Mimi and Papa?  I want to see them."

I want my children to be able to see my parents whenever they want.  I want my parents to be able to see my children whenever they want.  I want to be able to see my parents whenever I want.

My heart feels heavy today.


  1. I hope you feel better soon. My mom always said that when you have a daughter and a son, the son will eventually leave the family for his wife, but the daughter will remain with you forever (that's Korean 'wisdom' for you). I wonder how often the sons would admit that sometimes they just want their mommy and daddy, too.

  2. This brought tears to my eyes. How great that your parents are so awesome that Zeke feels that strongly (and you too). Hang in there, Wendy!

  3. I want to pack you guys up and move you near your parents. After Jason gets home, of course.

    An easy solution in theory, I know.