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Holiday and Separation Anxiety - The Ex-Communicator

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June 30th, 2009


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12:07 pm - Holiday and Separation Anxiety
I'm going to Brittany for a short holiday starting tomorrow, for 10 days. H and I are going on our own. Although we have been away for weekends together this is the first significant break we have had from our children in twenty years (I had a baby already when we moved in together). This is only just starting to sink in.

To be honest I feel a bit like I am losing a limb. They are reaching an age now when I have to let them go, but it is difficult after so many years, such a big chunk of my life, of being responsible for their welfare and safety 24/7. I didn't sleep very well last night, and that is partly due to some deep rooted anxiety at going away from them.

Actually, the reason we have picked these dates is that my daughter is going to Tatarstan for two weeks on a youth trip, mostly paid for by the Russian government. I didn't want to leave her in England, while I was in another country, but she is too old to be dragged along with us. This seemed a good opportunity for us all to get a break we would enjoy.

However, she is off tomorrow morning, flying from Birmingham airport at 3am, and I feel frightened to send my little girl to spend two weeks thousands of miles away. Of course she does not feel worried - she's excited about it, and I think I have managed not to impose my anxiety on her.

I don't know what I will be like in France - perhaps miserable the whole time. I have to be careful that I don't impose my worries on H, who deserves a good break and a rest.

(18 comments | Leave a comment)

Comments:


From:jomacmouse
Date:June 30th, 2009 11:35 am (UTC)
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It's possible that you won't read this until you come back, so I hope you and H *had* a good break :-) As for your worries, saying "that's normal" sounds a bit dismissive, which is the last thing I want to be. You'll all be fine, and kudos for managing not to add to any anxieties about travel that your daughter might have.
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From:communicator
Date:June 30th, 2009 01:02 pm (UTC)
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We are setting off tomorrow afternoon. She seems to be taking it all in her stride. She's studying Russian, so she'll get a chance to practice.
From:jomacmouse
Date:July 1st, 2009 06:07 am (UTC)
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Oh good, good. And speaking to actual Russians has to be helpful when learning Russian, yes. ('Though I'm not sure speaking to actual French people would have helped me - I sincerely hope your daughter is better at remembering tense endings than I was, otherwise madness ensues when working out the 'when' of something :-( )
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From:mistraltoes
Date:June 30th, 2009 11:53 am (UTC)
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Do try to relax. You deserve a rest, and worrying does more harm than good.
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From:communicator
Date:June 30th, 2009 01:04 pm (UTC)
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Yes, I catch myself almost feeling that worry has a function or a purpose, but it doesn't.
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From:kalypso_v
Date:June 30th, 2009 12:53 pm (UTC)
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I'm sure you've done a lot to equip your children to cope without you - but it's easy to forget that you have to learn to cope without them, too. This is practice. I seem to remember she went to France without you a couple of years ago - of course that wasn't so far, and probably it was just a week - it went OK, though, didn't it?

Don't feel you have to bottle up your worries, though. This phase of life may bring you and H closer together.
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From:communicator
Date:June 30th, 2009 01:06 pm (UTC)
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She went to Berlin for a few days. Nothing bad happened. She wasn't homesick or anxious, I think she had a great time.

I am hoping it does bring us together. His work has been very stressful too lately.
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From:trixieleitz
Date:June 30th, 2009 09:15 pm (UTC)
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Listen to kalypso_v, for she is wise.

I think it's easy to forget that children develop through many phases throughout their lives, not just the big ones like toddlerhood and puberty, and their parents are developing right along with them.

I haven't been through it myself, but I suspect that watching your child transition into adulthood is one of the hardest things a parent will ever do.
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From:happytune
Date:June 30th, 2009 05:55 pm (UTC)
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I think you have to *choose* - very consciously - to relax while you're away. If you end up being miserable then you'll look back and regret the valuable time away with H. And you guys deserve that time away.

Have a fantabulous time. I hope you come back feeling rested and well. :-)
From:egretplume
Date:June 30th, 2009 06:19 pm (UTC)
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I always feel anxious before I go on a trip. Maybe you'll feel a bit better once you're underway. I hope you have a great time!
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From:pennski
Date:June 30th, 2009 06:56 pm (UTC)
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I hope all works out well for you.

*Hugs*.
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From:happytune
Date:June 30th, 2009 08:59 pm (UTC)
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I've been looking at the capital - Kazan - online. All looks incredibly civilised! SC has a friend who comes from (relatively) nearby Nizhny Novgorod and she said it is very friendly there!
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From:katlinel
Date:June 30th, 2009 09:23 pm (UTC)
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I hope you and H can both enjoy your holiday - I am sure you both need it. You've done so well by your daughter that she will be fine, but it must be hard to go through this transition period. She will have gained from you being strong and hiding your anxiety - it is a generous way to behave towards her, fighting your own instincts in this case.
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From:glitterboy1
Date:June 30th, 2009 11:15 pm (UTC)
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I can only imagine, but it must be very hard to see them getting to this point - and to have a trip like this make it real. I'm sorry.

It's good of you to keep your worries away from your daughter, and away from H, as well. I hope that the excitement and the prospect of peace that you're helping give to them will feed back to you, as well. That said, I'm sure that it feels significant to both of them, especially to H. Even if he isn't saying anything, either, you're not on your own.

If you're daughter's flying at 3am, I suppose she must be on her way there by now, or nearly. I hope everything's gone smoothly, and that she's safely off.
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From:communicator
Date:July 1st, 2009 11:09 am (UTC)
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She threw a total wobbly about packing, in the middle of the night :-) then calmed down
From:(Anonymous)
Date:June 30th, 2009 11:24 pm (UTC)

Have fun in France

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Ex-communicator. The way you feel just shows you're a good mother. Be proud that your wee girl is flying - you helped make her the way she is. Stop worrying and have fun in France (please accept this as an order!).

:-)
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From:toft_froggy
Date:July 1st, 2009 06:27 pm (UTC)
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As someone who's mother has had the same anxiety but (mostly) managed to let me go and have adventures anyway, thank you for letting your daughter go. Sooner or later she'll thank you for it so much, and realize how hard it was for you. I hope you manage to have a good trip.

Edited at 2009-07-01 06:27 pm (UTC)
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From:pinkdormouse
Date:July 1st, 2009 08:30 pm (UTC)
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Hope you have a relaxing time. I'm sure your daughter will love her trip.

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