My flight to Newark, New Jersey, was timed to coincide with Kathleen, Josh, and Abigail's departure for Fairbanks. This was mostly for the benefit of the driver so 2 trips to the airport weren't required. It certainly worked to benefit me in a way I didn't expect. My final goodbye to these dear ones extended to the gate area of my flight and I even waved to Kathleen as she stood in the terminal and I in my seat on the jet.
(It was not all that long ago that we always gathered at the gate to greet and send-off. Such anticipation to search for the person we knew as we stepped out of the jetway. 9/11 changed all that. Now we have to truck through the whole airport, ride trams, escalators, subways--whatever each airport holds-- and finally meet up at baggage claim. I certainly enjoyed the way of the past much better.)
How hard to snuggle that tiny baby girl one last time, not really knowing when the next time I would. I breathed deeply of her, pulling inward all the softness and wonder of her little body. She smiled innocently at me, unaware of the longing and sadness in my heart. She is growing and changing at such astonishing speed as I have witnessed these past 3+ weeks that I may not even recognize her when we are next together.
Ahhh, the sorrow of missing the days and weeks to come
as she learns of her world with all its wonders.
But, I must be grateful for blogs, internet, and phones. And I am, I really am. At times like these, I think of the early pioneers and earlier pilgrims who packed all their possessions into a wagon or shiphold and parted for places unknown and unseen. No forwarding addresses, they left with one last glance back, most often to never again see the home, family and friends they were leaving. Sort of like dropping off the face of the earth, they moved away from all things safe and familiar in the pursuit of adventure, freedom, or gain. Somehow these dramatic scenes play out in my mind and offer me comfort at my own parting drama. After all, I will be able to talk to them tomorrow and be at peace as I can picture them in their home.
I truly am grateful for the effective communications systems we have in this day.
Yet I still miss the feel of warm skin and the sound of another's heart beating against mine.
But I, in my own little adventure, flew off in another direction in the sky and was greeted by a loving daughter and son-in-law and friendly cocker spaniel grand-dog. New arms to enfold me and heal my sore heart. Fluffy ears and paws, as well. This plan to move on for a few days rather than head home to a house quiet and devoid of baby stuff was the right one.
Although they are spread about, I am blessed to have others to love and who love me. And the ability to buy airline tickets.