Good old Mike and Susie

Tonight I found a letter that my Dad sent to me during my first week at college. He wrote:

"We miss you at home, but we are keeping busy. Sometimes I leave the jar of peanut butter out on the table with a knife stuck in it and it seems like you're here."

This made me laugh, particularly because I don't remember having done that, at least enough to have my Dad comment on it in a letter. In the same box, I found a whole stack of letters from my Dad and greeting cards from my Mom. Because they seem to come few and far between, my Dad's letters are always near and dear to my heart. He's a man of few words, so when he has something to say, I generally listen. My Mom's letters were full of news from home and asking how I was, did I need money, every single one signed, "I'm so proud of you! I love you! Love, Mom XOXOXOXOXOXOXO"

While re-reading some of these letters tonight, I felt overcome with emotion. I've definitely had my moments with each of my parents when we haven't seen eye to eye, but during a difficult first semester (and hell, difficult first year) at Muhlenberg, they were REALLY there for me.

As I prepare to leave New York, I think a lot about missing my friends and the city and my job. It's not often that I think about my family in this way: they always seem to transcend this idea of "missing." No matter where I am in the world, my family doesn't seem far, and I'm not quite sure how they've accomplished that.

I know that my decision to move abroad has been tough for them, but I give them major credit for allowing me to make my own decisions about my life and support me in the next step in my career. I know that, no matter what my address is in Paris, I'll have postcards, letters and greeting cards coming from Mom- and when you're far from home, that means so much. But this time, because I know that they will be missing their daughters (Katie's off to Africa for Peace Corps around the same time I leave for Paris), I'm really going to make the effort to send them letters as well. It's only fair and plus I need the good karma- if my kids inherit my independent streak, I'm in for a whole lot of inter-continental parental heartbreak...


Anonymous said...

what a cute pic of your mom and dad !

love your blog cherie and miss you much (and i'll come to paris to party with you and edith ... just tell me when!)


Kate said...

hahahaha! susie q and papa joe are adorable. you write a lot of what i can't figure out how to put into words. so, thanks for that. don't forget to add me to the mailing list too....