The fledgling

Academic question. Not at all personal. *koff koff*
In fact, I’m asking for a friend.
At which point does one cut the cord and stop missing one’s parents?

Years ago I would sob every time I left for college and my parents spoke to one of my professors about it. He was very nice about it and told them an anecdote about how the eagle keeps removing the feathers it lines its nest with, until the nest becomes too uncomfortable for the fledgling to stay.
My parents are failures clearly, because it’s been twenty years and they’ve only made the bloody nest more comfortable. Of course it is all their fault – raising their child to be dependent and dysfunctional when she is not within an 800 km range of them.

I have a couple of plans in mind now

  1. Act increasingly nasty when I next see my parents, forcing them to fight with me, vitiate the environment progressively so that by the end we’re all happy to see the back of each other.
  2. Be nasty to my kids starting today so that they hate me. This nips the issue in the bud and they don’t end up being miserable babies at the grand old age of 37. This whole business of being a good parent is overrated and misunderstood. You must raise them to hate you so that they don’t miss you too much.

If you have other ways to handle this mess, please give your solutions in the comments box. The winning comment will get – oh, I don’t know. Tear-free evenings?

27 thoughts on “The fledgling

  1. lol.
    sorry that is is the reaction I got from reading your ” friend’s” question.
    If I do have an answer to it I’ll comment later .

    Hope you have a great day 🙂


    • Yaar, yahi toh problem hai. Now with kids on the scene I have to worry about grown up things like school. In the good old day I’ve jumped on to a train and slept on the floor, traveled ticketless to go see them on a whim.

      • Your kids are in Elementary school I suppose. It is not the end of the works if they miss couple of weeks of school!!!

        • You suppose right!

          And I wish schools agreed with that thinking. If its not leave for something urgent, you have to get the child re-enrolled if you take them out of school. Not a situation I need to be in in a new country where admissions are hard to come by!

  2. Never. I know that is not the answer you or I would like to hear. But it is a fact and dear God I do hope it stays that way. And about being nasty and all that – well the kids and the parents know each other’s pressure points so well, that they are very nasty unintentionally and yet stick around each other so don’t even try.

  3. I’ve been having the same thought lately 🙂 being so close to your parents is so horrible when you live abroad but I still wouldn’t trade that for anything! And something tells me ‘your friend’ wouldn’t either! 🙂 good to see you back MM!

  4. Oh man ! I swear I didn’t read this post before I comment on the previous one about saying Bye to Ma at the airport.

    So ma, was with us for 6 months.. Pa couldn’t come due to various logistical issues… First time in their lives they were apart from each other for such a long duration ; First time that ma was away from her home for such a long duration; First time in her life ma hadn’t visited her mom for such a long duration…. I don’t want to trivialize it by calling it a sacrifice; but the things you do for your children ; they never cease. My ma would often call G’ma and ask Qs pertinent to babies; this when she has been around 2 other G’children ( who are 10 n 6 now) . All thru’ Sep everyone( Dad, Sis, G’ma, uncle, aunt and her 2 other Grand-babies) was making plans and drawing up her itinerary for when she returns. I half-joked with my G’ma to say none of them were worried for me and the fact that I will be on my own to parent 2 babies but instead were celebrating my mom’s return. She patiently explained that she does realize my life has changed and I have a lot to learn and could use all the help and then she added..But I’ve never been without seeing my daughter for so long. So yes, I am happy she is coming back.

    Mind you, I had had a gazillion arguments with mom over the 6 months she was here but as I dropped her off at the airport and drove back in the crazy DC traffic, all I felt was fear. I didn’t know how I’m going to be the awesome mom that she was/is. Maybe my babies sensed that it wasn’t G’ma , but me sitting with them in the back seat, they cried n wailed n screamed . We all had our own way of showing we needed ma.

    Don’t think I answered your Q but that about summarizes what I feel about the topic.

  5. Hi MM,
    I love your blog but rarely comment. It is great that you have a wonderful relationship with your parents and kids. I lost my mom when I was 21 and I was extremely cloae to her. Since then on, I think I have developed this protective mechanism where I dont connect emotionally with anyone. I have wished at times that I had some beautiful bonds some times.

    • Hugs, Uma. I cannot imagine losing a parent that young. It’s just wrong. I hope you work your way through this and make your connections. It will come. This is the beginning.

  6. Get your ‘rents to stay with you on extended stay:) hey! In my defense friends say that works like magic every single time. They’re so fed up of each other cant wait to see them off:) didn’t work on me just so you know, every time the mater comes over I’m sobbing two days into her stay because she’s going to leave in a month and half. Go figure. Clearly mine did as bad a job as yours:)

    • Mine are too damn young to come visit for more than a week or two. They have gypsy feet, loads of friends and a number of businesses dependent on them. They’re young enough to do piggy back rides for the kids, hence too young to stay longer. Sucks!

  7. Never is really the answer. I have lived in your boarding schools and college dorms and then a different country for last two decades..but you never ever stop missing them. Sadly no tricks work. All of them fail. Fail miserably. I know you wanted ideas and not this sort of an answer.

  8. If you do find an answer, please let me know. I cry each time I go back to my in-laws. All this at the age of 32. I used to literally count days in college. Monday was bad as I had to come to hostel, tuesday was ok, wednesday was a tad better as I could go home on friday, so on and so forth.

    Lately another worry has been troubling me. It sounds so horribly wrong to think but I cannot imagine life without my parents. I break into tears just contemplating the same.

    • Oh I have a post about that coming up. My parents’ friend passed away this morning and I’ve been in tears most of the day at the realisation that this is the beginning of the end. The first of their generation passing away. Hang in there, you.

  9. Perhaps no, but inculcate in them how important to be independent and soar. I think boarding school help. My Dad was like that was missing me to much. It’s important to be free and disconnect with parents I believe, not getting trapped into emotions.
    I love this beautifully churned words, He was very nice about it and told them an anecdote about how the eagle keeps removing the feathers it lines its nest with, until the nest becomes too uncomfortable for the fledgling to stay.

    Loads of love N hugs for this post

  10. Pingback: Coping | Perspectives and Prejudices

  11. I am so glad I randomly come to tmm to sneak a peek. I won’t repeat all the, err, friendly advice to your friend. But yay, you’re writing again and we are reading 😀

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