Last night, I cried. Now those of you who know me will say “NBD, you cry all the time,” which is pretty much true. I am a crier. But last night was different. It was one of those can’t-catch-your-breath, stuff-your-face-in-the-pillow-cause-you’re-sobbing-too-loud kind of cries.
I miss my little girl. I realized as I lay there in the dark, I will never see her again. Even if my child wasn’t transgender, I could certainly be feeling this. I know my sister did a few years ago when her children were graduating high school. Those little people are gone. Forever.
Of course I love the person he is becoming. I have a good son, who is growing into a wonderful person. I am very grateful that this child of mine is here, confident and comfortable enough with me to “come out.” And even though it’s uncomfortable sometimes, I would much rather that than any alternative.
But damn, I loved that little kid, too. I don’t want to say goodbye to her. I don’t want to say goodbye to imaginary trips to Paris to visit her sister’s farm. I want to slog through the muck with her, during a wet spring to look for frogs in the pond. I want to read bedtime stories. I want her climbing into bed beside me after a bad dream. I want to feel her tiny hands on my cheeks, and have her look me in the eyes, as she says “Mommy,” in the most serious tone.
But those things are pushed aside. Pushed aside by serious and intelligent conversations, real conversations. Pushed aside by friends who come to him for help and advice. Pushed aside by concerts and homework and TV shows that don’t make my head hurt. Pushed aside by chores and arguments, tears and apologies – on everybody’s part. Pushed aside by growth – also on everybody’s part.