Posted by: jeannineatkins | July 2, 2008


Back in Massachusetts, I was working on my laptop while my husband ate breakfast this morning. He said, “That click-clatter reminds me of the sound of beach stones being sucked back into the sea.”

I’ll take that sound with me as I finish doing laundry and yelling, trying for a nice yell, at my daughter to pack, since I’ll be escorting her via plane to L.A. this afternoon. Yikes yikes yikes. She’s going to study visual design at FIDM and I’m going to try not to panic about having her all across the continent. I’ll help her get set up, meet the new roommates, do some orientation, try to look somewhat presentable among the fashionable, and put in an hour or two a day on revision work. Some of us love L.A., and there’s much to love, but some of us have one foot in ancient Sumer and love that, too. History feels like home to me, and I’m glad I can carry that, tucked in my laptop, with me. I packed the Chronicles of Narnia, the whole thick volume, and Em gave me a pair of her old flip-flops with fleur-de-lies, too, so I’ll have something to wear in California and bring back home, making my dear one feel close.

And what was she doing last night, when I thought she should be packing? Watching the Little Mermaid. No way would I stick around for the scene when Ariel waves good-bye to her father.



  1. Awww! *hugs* I’m sure this is really hard on you, but I like that you’re supportive of her dreams too! She’ll be fine, she’ll do great! And L.A. ROCKS! My true hometown!

  2. Oh my goodness. I keep forgetting that you are old enough to have a daughter ready to leave home.
    Really, the flight time isn’t much worse there than if she’d moved to the center of the country or down south.

  3. What a big transition, Jeannine! I hope it all goes well; that was a good choice to skip watching The Little Mermaid. What does FIDM stand for?

  4. I hope your flight went well. So good that you’re “escorting” her–you’ll have pictures of her place to take back with you, to give details to your imaginings about what she’s doing.

  5. wishing you well on all fronts, J! “hug*

  6. Thanks for the hugs and reassurance, Debbi! I keep looking around, wanting to know the names of the gorgeous flowers. I guess I better look for a book!

  7. Yep, I think she’s ready and maybe I’m almost ready. No, the flight time’s not so bad, but mom and dad can’t quite help wishing she were a drive away. But no palm trees.

  8. Thanks, Mary. It’s Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising. She’s very visual, very into fashion (despite her parents’ lack of) so this could be a great choice for her.

  9. Yes, a lot of the anxiety is about not knowing. Being here is quite reasurring. She reads my blog, but I need her to start one!

  10. Thanks, Nan! Yesterday I could really use a hug, and I’ll still take one today, but being here and seeing things take shape I feel much better.
    Hey, looks like I’ll be teaching at Mt. Holyoke this fall, one children’s lit course! Maybe I’ll see you there — but hopefully before.

  11. FDIM
    I wondered if it had something to do with fashion– that’s why I asked! My daughter (just 11 now) is also interested in the heady world of fashion. I’ll file that away to ask you about in a few years!
    Happy Fourth,

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