I have just survived my first spend the night party.
Not mine exactly, but my daughter's.
Not really her first one, but the first one that she wasn't with her cousins or the next door neighbor or Grandma's.
The first one that she spent with a friend from class.
The first one with a family and a house that I was not too familiar with. Ok, barely familiar with.
I know that it is too much to expect that I can be up close and personal with the children and parents that she will befriend. Right????????????
It's just up until last night, I was. Her social circle was mostly cousins, families we have known for years and neighbors. While she has made many friends at school and attended her fair share of their birthday parties, it was all under my watchful eye or the eyes of my friends and family.
Until last night.
It finally happened. She was invited to a spend the night party that I could not find a reason or excuse to say No.
This was a girl in her class that I she has been good friends with and I knew her Mom was active at the school like me. Her Mom called me and was very nice, had a great number of planned activities for the girls, asked about allergies.............all the appropriate questions.
So I gave my consent, which Dad was none too happy, yet knew it was inevitable.
I confess I drove by their house to check it out a few days before hand. It was very nice, looked much like my own house.
So off she went, so excited she seemed to be walking on air. Not in the least bit concerned about being away from home all night.
My house was too quiet. I could not go to sleep.
Finally around 2am I nodded off. Did I mention I was sleeping in her bed.
How sad is that??????
My phone rings at 3:11am. In the span of those two rings I thought, yippee, she misses me and can't sleep and wants me to come get her. This made me oddly Happy.
Me: Hey Macy, what are you doing?
Her: What are you doing?
Me: We are sleeping , its the middle of the night.What are you doing still awake?
Her: I just wanted to tell you that I am going to stay for a few more hours.
Me: Macy, you need to go to sleep.
Her: Ok, Bye.
She hangs up.
Now I am wide awake. What are 3 first graders doing up and calling me on a cell phone at 3am?
What else are they doing? Does the Mom know they are awake?
What if they......or.........or.....................maybe.................would they...........could they..........?????
You can imagine all the places my mind went for the next 30 minutes.
Then I fell back asleep and had a lovely dream that involved Matthew McConaughy (I had been watching the Wedding Planner earlier in the evening).
I woke up at 9am.
Held off calling to check on her until 10:30 when I was told I didn't need to come get her until 4pm. WHATTTTTTTTTT, I said I would be there around 2.
We run some errands, the 3 of us. Me, Dad and my son. I realize that I would not have felt complete without her, I feel incomplete all day. We were meant to be a family of four.
She calls at 1:30, PLEASEEE don't come get me yet. I am starting to get a little complex here, she doesn't miss me at all.
Is this normal, does she even like me, am I no fun??????????
So we go by the grocery store and pick her up at 3:30. She had been gone for 24 hours and she STILL WAS NOT READY TO LEAVE.
But she does, she is a little crabby and falls to sleep at 7 for the night.
I survived. A little sadder that she has reached another childhood milestone.
I know I should be thankful that she is confident and independent and social. That is our goal in raising our daughters(and sons) isn't it. I should be happy that I did not have to make that midnight trek to retrieve a homesick child that so many parents make.
That I wanted her to call me in the middle of the night told me something about myself.
I am not quite ready or as prepared as I thought to loosen those apron strings.
Talking about it is one thing, but doing it quite another.
Were 6 year olds always so grown up and so sure of themselves?
Did I teach and encourage this in her or is it her inborn nature to be so eager to step out into the world and out from under me?
Is it something about the world these days that brings this on?
I want to stop the clock.
OK- I want to turn it back.
I want that 2 year old that clung to me like a vine for about 4 months to the extent that I referred to her as my barnacle and not always in a good way.
And the not so flattering way I commented that she had become my hood ornament.
I want that Back. I do. I want to control her world, her friends, her everything.
OK, I even scared myself there. I don't really want all that back. And I am so proud of this child with such high self esteem, fearless nature and conquer the world attitude.
This child that talks nonstop, is fiercely competitive and drives me too distraction is the light of my life ( as is her brother) and all of this will serve her well as she grows up and eventually leaves my nest for good. I know this in my mind and in my heart, but my soul still needs her close by, needs to tuck her in at night and needs to be needed.
Just as she needs to build life long friendships and just learns to be.
I just pray to God that I can survive all this growing up.