The Scariest Love of All

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The Scariest Love of All
16 March 2015

I started writing this post last week. It was to be about how I took my kids to a music festival, how it was awesome to share stuff I loved with them, and how I took real joy in them loving the experience.

For some reason, I ended up writing about how I needed to prepare for when they decided to leave home. To spread their wings and take on the world themselves. I wrote about how traumatising I thought it would be, and all I could see was a sad old lady sitting in a big house all by herself.

I had to step away from the keyboard and get a grip.

Now, even though I am aware this will happen, and it is scary. I was grateful I managed to step off the thought spiral that the love of our kids can send us on.

I wasn’t going to share the post I wrote, as I thought it was a little manic. But I think we all have these thoughts. And we can quickly go from, “man, my kids are ace,  I love them so much” to “oh my god, what if something happens to them?”.

So here it is.

I took my girls to Golden Plains (music festival) last weekend. It wasn’t meant to be that way, I was meant to go on my own. Have a bit of alone, reading, relaxing, music listening and too many beers. But the when the well executed baby sitting fell through, I had to reassess my plans.

At first it was annoying, I was bummed about missing out on the one weekend a year that is mine. Alone. But another part of me was really excited to share the weekend with my two little people who mean everything to me. Plus, my kids love music and food trucks. How could I deny them a weekend of consuming both?

So we packed the car (teddies in tow) and headed to Meredith.

We met our convoy at the servo on the highway. I filled the car and came out with two bags of mixed lollies. I chucked them at the girls and they looked at me like I was setting them up for a fall. “It’s Golden Plains weekend girls, all bets are off!” We turned the stereo up to a responsibly loud volume, they kicked up their feet, sat back and devoured that sugar in record time.

On the drive there, I thought of the line between being a mum and a friend to your kids. Can you be both? Is it wrong to actually really enjoy the company of your kids so much you’ve made them your new festival buddies? I feel like perhaps I am setting myself up for a fall. The day will come when my kids won’t want to be my festival buddies anymore. In fact, the last time Maya and I went to Golden Plains, she said to me in the car on the way home “you know I will want to come to this with my friends one day, are you ok with that?”.

So perhaps it isn’t the line between being a friend and a mum I am so worried about. The more I am writing, the more I am realising I am actually just scared and preparing myself for the fact that one day my kids are going to have their own lives that won’t have me as their centre. And when I say I am scared, I don’t mean that I want to lock them up and never let them go, I just mean that I know that when the time comes for them to be free and leave the comfy nest, I will be so torn between pride, excitement and terror.

It is an amazing thing to be a parent. To have such a relationship with my kids, that I consider them my friends is very fortunate. It’s fine line we all walk every day between love and fear. To love something so much is a risky business. But none of us question it.