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Tuesday, January 10, 2006

i've known too many goodbyes

Something hit me in the stomach the moment they left my apartment.

I've been spoiled by their company and it's hard to let them go. It's hard knowing I won't see their faces for another 6 months. I should be used to it by now. But I'm not.

Having my parents here has been nostalgic. Tonight I sat in an Italian restaurant with the both of them, in the 16th arrondissement, and remembered what if felt like to be someone's child. I am no longer a mysterious foreigner with them, I am a daughter, a part of the family, and their baby. I'm their youngest, and the only girl.

Part of me found it hard suddenly losing my independance. At first I was uncomfortable being in such a familiar cocoon. But I eased into it. It didn't take long for me to start laughing at my dad's jokes or to start holding tight to my mother. Suddenly I didn't have to take my pretentious Parisian surroundings so seriously. I didn't have to fend for myself on every account. I had people to fall back into. People who would catch me, then pour me a glass of wine and let me bitch.

They had highs and lows in Paris. A shitty apartment and then a better apartment. My mother's wallet being stollen. The weather being uncomfortably cold. They got to see past the romance that a short stay and a nice hotel will blind you from. They used to always tell me "But you're in Paris!" When I would complain. They were always understanding, but now they really understand. They've seen how tired I look at the end of the day.

When I look at my mom and my dad and I see myself.

I laugh like my dad. I have the same taste buds as my dad. I have the same curiosity for small shops and back streets as he does. I love to tap my feet to a heavy jazz or blues beat like he does.

I dream like my mother. I stare off into the distance and walk for hours, deep in thought, in the same way she does. I gasp at beautiful clothing, and hold onto beautiful poetry in the same way she does. And like her, I often think too hard. I think it's a strength and a weakness for both of us.

The only time I grow annoyed with them is when they remind me too much of myself.

But for the most part, I adore them. They are the most understanding, open minded parents I've ever met. They dance, drink, curse and speak honestly about how they feel. God they're amazing people. Even if they weren't my parents I'd want to invite them over for drinks and dinner.

Even more, they adore me. And I'll always love them for loving me.


Blogger Charlie said...

Aww... your parents sound amazing! I love the part about how you'd invite them over even if they weren't your parents.

I got my French visa yesterday and I'll be in Paris on the 21st... it still doesn't seem real to me that I'm going to be living there.

You still up for G&Ts?

9:50 PM  
Blogger Gillian Young said...

Congrats on getting your visa! None of it will seem real until you're up in the air, heading to this city of dreamers. Sometimes it doesn't even feel real when you are here though.

And yes, we're on for G&Ts.

9:30 AM  
Blogger Wenda said...

What a wonderful tribute, Gill. Such love and respect you have for one another.

11:03 AM  
Blogger maitresse said...

ohhh, feeling warm and fuzzy, and missing my parents.

2:41 AM  
Blogger schuey said...

I don't like my parents much, but I must admit that this piece is quite beautiful. And even better, your pics give the exact same impression.

4:21 AM  
Blogger baylor said...

I feel the same way about my parents. I think they'll always be my cocoon of safety no matter how old I get.

And you're parents are lucky to have a daughter like you and how appreciates them so much!


6:30 AM  

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