farewells.

JULY 2009 – Some favourite moments…
july_2009_mosaic

1. harbourfront, 2. harbourfront3, 3. churrosbythelake, 4. harbourfront4, 5. at_the_beach, 6. playground_fun, 7. 4_climbing_a_ladder, 8. 2_finding_patterns, 9. 3_at_the_park, 10. local_market, 11. bonjour_brioche, 12. raspberry_fun, 13. at_the_hairdresser, 14. science_week1, 15. science_week2, 16. scienceweek3, 17. growing_buds, 18. indoor_picnic, 19. harbourfront2, 20. lolo_greenbeans, 21. alpha_project, 22. leslieville_icecream, 23. storytime, 24. tiger_watching, 25. zoo_pals

AUGUST 2009 – Some favourite moments…
august_2009_mosaic

1. family_playground, 2. happy_bday_4, 3. sam_4_bro, 4. 2_and_shades, 5. wowo_and_4, 6. 2_and_3_at_the_pond, 7. a_tanned_2, 8. aqua_girl, 9. 4_and_bro, 10. Uncle_oli_the_human_playground, 11. more_swimming_fun, 12. ago, 13. art_class, 14. 1_at_the_market, 15. st_lawrence_market, 16. apple_fritters_with_lola, 17. ains_and_sam, 18. lolo_at_brunch, 19. 1_comforting_a_sick_3, 20. bff_2_and_3, 21. high_park_wading_pool, 22. high_park_train_2, 23. 3_and_the_llama, 24. coffee_at_school, 25. family_craft_night

(FYI…To view descriptions and the full-size photos, click on the link of the corresponding photo you want to view.)

As we welcome the fall season officially, we have had to say goodbye to summer in our house.  It’s been a difficult letting-go of shorts and tanks and especially hard parting with the summer dresses (as #3 has tried to convince me over and over again to just wear them one last time).  The last thing on our list to put away will be the flip-flops which I personally am having trouble saying goodbye to.  The no-nonsense flip flop has been my go-to footwear for the season.  But alas, I know it’s time to wear socks again.  The above snippets of summer don’t even scratch the surface of all we did and with whom.  I’m sure that in the coming months, when we are in the dead of winter, you’ll be seeing more “I miss summer” posts with more pics that I haven’t included here.

The end of summer also was the end of independent living for my grandfather.  We, mostly my aunts, cousins, and my mother, packed up his apartment and said goodbye as he moved in permanently with my mom.  He wasn’t ready to let it go and frankly, some part of me wasn’t either.  I had spent a large portion of my childhood there and it was our last physical link to my grandmother who had passed away 3 years ago.  I remember watching my grandfather watch my family go through his things and purge and pack and purge in an almost whirlwind fashion.  This was his life.  It wasn’t like they were doing so in a flippant manner but you could see that the whole thing was still difficult to digest for him, especially the fact that he would not be returning there.  This was his home for the last 23 years, a home that he had shared with the love of his life for 20 of those years.  And in one afternoon, it was empty and he had to close the door there one last time.  For the last 3 years, we have lived around the corner from this apartment, always a phone call away for a much-needed trip to the bank, the grocery store, or just to go have lunch.  I remember that he also ran out of rice one time at 9:00 at night and he phoned us to bring some over asap.  I will miss the physical proximity and the kids shouting, “There’s Lolo’s house!” as we drove by it every day.  At 90, going on 91, there was just no way that it was safe for him to be by himself at this age and he admitted to me that he knew physically, he couldn’t live there anymore but still, his mind was just not ready to let it go.

Farewells are one of the most challenging things to do in life.  Doing so willingly allows you to accept change and be grateful for the experience itself.  Trying to hold on too tight to specific moments, things, and people makes the inevitable letting go more painful than it has to be.  But as we let go, let go of one of the best summers we’ve had, let go of our children and watch them grow, and let go of a home that has given someone some of the best years of their life, we unwittingly make room for even more rewarding life experiences and we embrace the fullness of life and the endless possibilities it has to offer.  The trick is to trust that these experiences will in fact happen and to realize that more often than not we will miss out on these opportunities the longer we hold on to the past.

So, just like quickly ripping off a bandaid, we are saying a final goodbye to bathing suits and flip flops and a warm (albeit lukewarm) hello to scarves and socks…

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