Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Here's Looking at you KiddO -- The new oregonlive.com blog

Here's a link to the new Oregonlive.com KIDDO [ie, kid- friendly, family friendly] blog, where I am a community blogger- WriterMom -- http://www.oregonlive.com/kiddo

My first two blog topics - Dear Miley: It's Called NO
and My MOM: The original environmentalist...

Cornelia Seigneur

Thursday, May 8, 2008

GIVING HER WINGS - Real-Life Mom Oregonian column

REAL-LIFE MOM - SW Weekly Oregonian
By Cornelia Seigneur
Daughter's wings to take her far, bring her back
Thursday, May 08, 2008
The Oregonian

M y mother-in-law said recently, "Why are you letting Rachel go so far away to school next year?"

My daughter plans on attending Bodenseehof Bible School, a Capernwray college, in Germany -- the country of my birth -- this September.

I responded that I have to let her go. It is what she wants. I try to give my children wings, and I'm happy that my daughter has goals and dreams.

Yet now reality is hitting.

Rachel has applied to work full time this summer with Clackamas County. She says this will help her earn a chunk of money for college.

Problem is, Rachel working full time means we forgo our usual family road trip and the summer spontaneity I love.

I should be happy that Rachel is so responsible, caring about helping pay for college. Instead, I have mixed emotions. I'd rather she just continue her part-time, work-from-home, flexible-hours writing and transcribing jobs, which are just right for us to plan a family getaway, something we have done each summer since Rachel was born.

I'm realizing this could be our last summer together. There's so much inside me that doesn't want things to change.

Yet I know things must.

We have a creek in our backyard. We bought our house 18 years ago for the yard and have stayed here because we love it so much.

The creek is a draw for wildlife, and every year two ducks fly in to bathe there. We have a family story that the same ducks come back each year. When Rachel and her brother Ryan, a year behind her, were toddlers, they named those ducks Cora and Chester -- Chester was the name of an elderly gentleman one block over.

We purchase cracked corn at the farm store for the ducks. One year Cora laid eight eggs in the ivy behind the creek.

In midsummer, Cora and Chester fly away. But once the cherry trees bloom again, Cora and Chester return, confirming spring's arrival.

I've always wondered what makes them fly back every year. Is it the flowing water? Is it the calmness of our yard, nestled in woods and ivy? How do they find their way back?

As I think about Rachel leaving this fall, going so far away, I ponder: What will bring her back? What will remind those wings to point in the direction of her family?

Perhaps it is providing a place of acceptance and letting her know that this is always home. No matter how far she goes, and no matter how long she is gone. I have to let her fly with the wings I have given her.

I am glad she is using them.

And, hey, as I told my mother-in-law: In the meantime, I have an excuse to book a flight to my home country.

Cornelia Seigneur is a West Linn writer and mother of five. Her column appears the second Thursday of each month. Visit her blog at www.corneliaseigneur.com or e-mail her at inaword@comcast.net http://www.oregonlive.com/metrosouthwest/oregonian/index.ssf?/base/metro_southwest_news/1209866102227020.xml&coll=7


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Cousins bicycling at Champeog Park

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