Angela Shaw

My always unschooled girls are now 12 and 14. They were very shy as
youngsters (esp. my oldest) and against the grain, I kept them home from
school and I allowed them to blossom at their own rates of speed and I
supported them as they needed it. I often answered questions for them.
They never stayed at other people's houses without me unless they felt
really comfortable with them. They sometimes hid behind my legs and had
such a hard time talking to people that they weren't comfortable with. They
shared a family bed and then my room long after most people's kids were
sleeping in their own beds in their own rooms. (even other attachment
parents I knew) But at 12 and 14 they are so self assured and confident. It
is such a joy to watch them blossom.

We planned a trip to an island off the coast of Maine today where one of
their pony club friends lives. We have animals here at home and my husband
is out of town, so I planned to ride the ferry over with them this morning
and return on a ferry later today. When we got to the ferry terminal, the
boat was cancelled because the dock on the island side was malfunctioning.
We discussed our options and returned home and waited to hear if a later
ferry was going over. The only one available was the last ferry of the day.
That meant that we either had to wait a day so I could ride with them, or
they would have to go alone. (together alone, lol!) They decided to take
the ferry without me.

We arrived at the ferry this afternoon with a few minutes to spare and they
got out to grab a spot in line while I parked the truck. It was busy
because two of the earlier ferries had been cancelled. They had their
tickets and most of their luggage. I told them I'd grab the last bag when I
parked and meet them in line. Well, the ferry personnel loaded the
passengers while I was still parking. The girls boarded the boat and got
seats and got their baggage settled and then came out to meet me as I
brought their last bag on board. I left them with a few words of caution
and reminded them to have fun and they were off. I was so proud of them.
As they boarded, one of them had called me on my cell to let me know they
were getting on the boat. (I didn't have a chance to answer it as I was
running with their last bag as I saw the line moving from my parking spot up
the road.)

They are such responsible girls and they are such a pleasure to be around.
I'll miss them, but I know they'll be good guests. They will be swimming
and possibly riding horses and hanging out with their friend and her family
for 3 days and nights. I am truly not worried about them. I know they make
good and safe decisions. They were excited to be taking this journey and as
much as I will miss them, I am so excited for them. I am so happy they were
able to do this on their own and feel confident and comfortable despite the
fact that I never pushed them out of their comfort zones when it came to
relating with people. I have no doubt that if they need help they will not
be afraid to approach the boat personnel and address them. They have no
fear of adults. No us vs. them mentality. This is their first trip where
they can't call in the middle of the night and have me come and get them.
They were not delivered to someone's door step. They travelled on this
small journey together, but alone.

I am filled with joy for them. I have no idea what I'll do for the next 3
days to entertain myself. I have lots of hobbies but my mind will
constantly return to them. Not sure I'll be able to concentrate on
anything. Maybe I'll take long walks with the dog and muck lots of stalls.


[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]