Pea soup is a simple recipe. A combination of dried peas, broth, water, ham hock if you wish, carrots, celery, potatoes, salt, bay leaf all in a pot with a stove flame that cooks until it is thick with flavor. Those of us who love pea soup love its thick creaminess, rich flavor and satisfying nutrition. We love the ingredients of our life. It seems simple on the first glance. You have a few people who get along, enjoy each other, love each other and are a family. You mix them together and a complex soup of different needs, goals, desires, directions can take that simplicity feeling away. It then feels complex. It is not as simple as our soup. It is not as easy to just decide to put this and that together for a satisfying completion. I am speaking in metaphor that is making this concept even more complex, I know. I am trying to say, I love that pea soup in front of me, simple and sure to enjoy. If I put the feelings, needs, directions, personal ambitions, desires, dreams of a family all in one pot then life is complex, not so simple.
I am one who loves my home life. I am one who adored being a mommy with small children. That was my heart life. I loved being Dougie's wife and still do. When you have small children you dream for them to fulfill their lives. You so want to see them reach for their dreams. Doug and I worked so hard to be sure our daughters believed in themselves so they could and would reach high and work hard to accomplish what they wanted in this life. We are so proud that they have done that. But gosh darn it I lost control of the recipe. When they were under my roof I could direct the narrative to a certain degree. I had a say. I always knew I would have an empty nest one day but that was in the future. My empty nest came, I marveled at my daughters and how they grew in such beautiful ways. But wait, I love you my dearest daughters, wait for me. I want to be near you. I want to continue to see you mature, have tea or coffee with you on a regular basis, I want to bring you gifts for your kitchen. But we did too good of a job. You flew, you flew so far from that nest. In other words you both live so fricking far away from me, Maine and Australia! Really, you flew to Maine and Australia so that my arms could barely stretch that far and the tips of my fingers can not touch you without major plane flights, hundreds of dollars and personal life adjustments. Painful distances.
I just want my pea soup. I just want to live near my daughters, near Freyja when I can call up and ask, "Can I take my little granddaughter to the park today?" This distance, California to Maine does not lend it self to such a daily or once a week, at that, activity. Oh, will you come back? Will you find a home near by my nest that I have built following the raising of my children? I have created such a lovely and satisfying life in my post "mommy" life. It is rich and challenging and creative and filled with friends who I truly, truly care about. I feel so very lucky to have this life. I know there are so many other dedicated mothers whose adult children are living in other states, in other countries and even like my daughter, Anna, other hemispheres. I know they cry too. They ache with a heart that wishes life was not so complex. Just give me pea soup please. I want to say, continue to follow your dreams, go where you may, settle where your heart directs you and I do. But when I awake in the wee hours of the morning and I sense how very complex it all is my heart leaks, my eyes weep. Can't it once again be simple, or can't it be like when I thought I was in control? Life is telling me again, I have to let go.
Letting go for a mother that loves so deeply is not so easy. It just is not. I am not going to say leaving at the end of this week to go back to California when I will not wake up to see this precious baby is not going to break my heart. It is. And then I am going to prepare to travel two weeks later to Australia because this year has been so complex I have not seen my precious Anna for way too long. I will be leaving again on a jet plane to the down under when there will not be snow or winter. There will be summer and the beach and the close reminder of the devastating fires. But, I will be with my other precious, my Anna and her darling Aussie husband. I will have a few days with this love of my life and it will be so sweet. But gosh darn again, wish life was not so complex. Wish it was just simple, and creamy and oh so satisfying like a bowl of fresh pea soup. This current bowl is a bit too salty, too many tears....