Thursday, September 29, 2016

Never Underestimate the Power of Gilmore Girls

I'm not sure how it happened, but "Gilmore Girls" has become my life.

The kiddles and I have embarked on a complete re-viewing of the entire series – from the first episode to the last – in anticipation of a day-after-Thanksgiving marathon of the much-anticipated new installment.

Oh how I have missed thee, Gilmore Girls!

For too many years than I like to admit, I have been lost. Off-track. Adrift. Battered by the harsh realities of teenagers, mistakes, the dreaded empty nest, and the devastating loss of the only thing that has ever truly been my purpose: being a mother to my loinfruits.

I know I'm still a mother, and I still do motherly things, but it's not the same when you don't come home every day to homework, "what's for dinner?" and a reassuring mess that leaves no doubt as to the necessity of your continued presence.

But – after they're all grown up – it's just not the same.

Don't get me wrong, I prepared for this reality for years. Bracing myself against the inevitable collision of independence and adulthood that was just waiting to plow me down. And – despite my best efforts – I learned that in this, as with any other crash, bracing yourself for impact only causes more damage.

And then the Gilmores brought me back.

I know it sounds ridiculous at the same time that it makes total sense.

Over the past several years (yes! I literally mean years) I have blamed my discombobulation on everyone and everything, but after just a couple episodes I realized that my major malfunction is really the loss of the one thing I always used to define myself.

I have been a mom for 55% of my life - 57% if you count gestation. It's always going to be the thing in my life (other than breathing) that I've done the longest. And I love it. I wouldn't want it any other way. But my sweet petites are now 24 and 21, and no one lives at home (although we all know it could happen again), and no one needs me after school or after work or for a ride.

It's true that I have looked forward to this very circumstance for a long time. Now that it's here, though – despite the fact that I do love the freedom and cherish so much my relationships with these amazing creatures I had the honor to help cook (even though they'll never be done) – I've lost my True North.

I feel it in my  teeth, my fingertips, my follicles, my spleen, my toenails, and the deep, deep depths of my foundering soul. Before I fully realized the root cause of my discontent; however, Lorelai and Rory showed me the light. Going back to Stars Hollow restored my spirit. Recognizing myself – my faults, foibles, good intentions, and fierce love – in all the lovely ladies on this show made me remember who I was and the things that made me happy.

In typical Rebecca form I had been facing the loss of my deep-rooted parental imperative by stubbornly acting as if nothing were wrong. Then Lorelai, Rory, Sookie, Paris – and even Emily – gave me permission to feel all the feels.

Instead of going to therapy I have gone to Stars Hollow and Friday Night Dinners and Yale. And I must admit that (so far) the results are marvelous.

Thank you, Gilmore Girls – and I can't wait to catch up with you in November.

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