Today is the womanchild's eighteenth birthday. Legally a woman, she'll always be my child. I haven't spoken to her today though I have left her a couple of voice mails. She'll see me if she wants to. I know she's planning on going out with the guy she's been dating for a couple of years tonight, and I hope they have a wonderful time. Yesterday, she came to me crying because he wanted to break up (the day before her birthday! ARGH!), and I'm just hoping and praying that she can find some peace and happiness now. This has been a very hard time for her, losing her father, having her mother in a meltdown, starting college and being in a tumultuous relationship. I've worried so much about her getting so serious so young, but I know the desire underneath it is to be loved and secure. Love her family has provided. She knows what that feels like. We didn't that good of a job on the security, but I'm not going to go off on my own guilt trip.
I'm so proud of the woman my daughter is becoming. Intelligent, courageous, ethical, moral, opinionated, stronger than she realizes, it truly is an honor to have just been part of her life, much less her mother. I know how vulnerable she is. how hard she fights to hide that, and how afraid she is of those vulnerabilities. I have no doubts about her ability to handle the challenges life brings. Like all mothers I have many wishes both mundane and lofty for her.
I just heard from her, and she's in tears again, hurt by the boyfriend, hurt by me and others in the family. I won't be seeing her today as much as I wish I could. I wish I could make this a happy birthday for her, but I can't. She's coming into legal adulthood in tears and disappointment. I want to tell her... I want to tell myself... that happiness will come too.