Curiosity takes me to leaving the nest
Milestone events always get me thinking. My daughter recently received her Red Seal in culinary arts and my son has his grade 12 graduation ceremony and dinner this Friday. He will be leaving the nest in September as he goes away for university. I am so excited to see what they and my step kids do in life, but I am apprehensive at the same time, wondering if I have done enough to prepare them. They seem to be on the right path.
I have been following two baby great horned owls for the past few weeks and at the end of April the mom sat close by the nest watching my every move. Today, I could only find one baby in a different tree, and mom was not around that I could see.
Amazing how they change in the space of three weeks! Check out the pictures from Lloyd Park to see an earlier shot. Great horned owl parents will continue to care for their young for a number of months, unlike some other types of birds.
It is interesting how parenting styles seem to shift with different animals and with the generations. I was raised in the “kids should be seen and not heard” and the “quality time, not quantity time” generation. My sister and I didn’t always follow the first to my poor grandmother’s dismay. A proper Sunday roast beef dinner, followed by chocolate pudding for dessert was quickly terminated when my sister and I started giggling and I laughed the pudding out my nose! A lovely evening was spent in my room.
I know that I adjusted my parenting as a result, but one thing I hope I did not become is a helicopter parent. I will be dropping my son off at his residence, but I will not be choosing his courses, or contacting his professors. I know there will be bumps in the road, but I’m hoping that I have given my kids enough leeway to learn from failure and to figure things out on their own. Fortunately for my kids, I have been nicer than the barnacle goose. There is an incredible BBC video about a barnacle goose chick leaving the nest at http://www.bbc.com/earth/story/20141020-chicks-tumble-of-terror-filmed. Spoiler alert – it has a happy ending.
What is that expression – life starts when the kids leave? Whoo, Whoo!