Words of Wisdom

Youth is wasted on the young.

Friday, 10 May 2013

Turning 18: Cutting The Cord

The first time  we severed the tie was moments after she was born. My sweet, sweet mother, who had no such support when she brought me into the world, took the pair of stainless steel pincers proffered by our wonderful midwife and made the cut as directed:

"Cut here," she said,"you can do it!"

And my mother cut. And my baby was free from me and yet with me.

My father once said to me that nothing altered your life as much as your child telling you they didn't need you any more.
"when you're having a child," he explained,"you do a fair bit of prep, and everyone tells you whats in store...so you have some idea. But nothing prepares you for the moment they tell you they don't need you."

Of course, I know it's not that straight forward. Heavens above, I went back to the bosom of my family at 34, when I was about to give birth to the BA! If you are blessed, as we are, as a family, you will always be connected to the people who grew you, loved you and turned you out into the world. But let's face it, we do have to turn these babies out into the world. And mostly they're champing at the bit to get there....

If you haven't guessed, we're about to celebrate a milestone birthday.

In Australia, the 18th birthday signifies a coming of age.
Driving in SA: 16-17 (recently you can't get your full licence until 18...but only recently)
Voting: 18

When I was a gal, the 21st birthday was the big event. But this was obviously a persistent hangover (pardon the Freudian slip)  from the days when you qualified for drinking and voting at 21. I'm not actually sure when the 18th took over from the 21st as the milestone birthday, but take over it did.....

And so I am faced with the second cutting of the cord, with all its attendant stresses:
Where is she? What time will she be home? How many of her clothes will she have left behind her in a trail from the nightclub to the taxi...........

Happy Birthday my wild Baby Angel as you flutter into your nineteenth year.


dawn marie giegerich said...

Thanks for the visual on your flaming family. There are soap operas on primetime stations with less interesting characters.

Stacy said...

Oh, happy birthday to her! She looks gorgeous and ready to head into adulthood. :)

Here you can be 18 to vote but 21 to drink (16 to drive). It was 18 to drink from the late 60's (I think) into the mid-80's. Much high school alcoholism and underaged drinking ensued when the classmates could buy alcohol for the lower classmates. Not to say it still doesn't happen, but I think to a lesser extent.

Arizaphale said...

Dawn: I think so too. Do you think I could sell the rights?
Stacy: Thanks! Kind of wish our drinking age was higher!