CONVERSATION WITH…The Soil…Feeling left behind by a flower…

I just returned from a week’s vacation, visiting my daughter who lives thousands of miles away. Now, since I’m back “Over the Hill on the Yellow Brick Road,” I’m feeling angry, hurt, and as if I’ve been left behind. Walking along the Yellow Brick Road, I was glad to hear a pile of soil on the ground calling out to me. The soil said:


SOIL: Hey you, I know how it is.

What? What do you mean?

SOIL: You have the “I wish I could adjust to being left behind” look on your face. I’d know it anywhere. I’m in the same place.

How so?

SOIL: Well, about a year ago, a seed came into my life. I hugged her under the ground so tightly I almost squashed her to death. I was just trying to keep her safe and warm.

I did the same with my daughter when she was a baby.

SOIL: Yeah. Whenever it rained, I did everything I could to be sure my seed was nourished with water. And miraculously, she grew roots.

I gave my daughter roots, too.

SOIL: But, my seed’s roots grew bigger and wider. Sometimes it drove me crazy, trying to figure out how to keep her nourished, and continuing to hold her in place, even when she made it difficult.

I’ve been there.

SOIL: And then…things started to fall apart. When I least expected it, my seed shoved herself above the ground. She grew a stem and kept growing higher and higher. She kept growing further and further away from me.

Welcome to my world.

SOIL: Then she grew thorns on her stem! Who told her to do that? Not me!

Sounds like my daughter’s tattoos.  Not my personal favorite.

SOIL: I guess those are just parts of who they are.  Anyway, at this point, my seed is a fully grown rose.


She’s beautiful.

SOIL: Thank you. But her stem is so tall and far from the ground, if I want to talk to her, I have to scream my guts out.

Most of the time, I talk to my daughter through some kind of a screen. It’s not the same as speaking to her face to face. I hate it.

SOIL: What’s up with this???? Why is this happening?

I don’t know! But leaving my daughter was so hard this time.  Accepting I won’t see her in person very often makes me want to give up. I want to somehow separate myself from the pain. And move on!

SOIL: It breaks my heart when I realize no matter how hard I cry or how loudly I whine, my rose is never coming back down here.

Although…you know…you can never really separate from your rose.  And I can never really separate from my daughter.

SOIL: Why not?

Because we carry their roots. And deep down, I think they appreciate knowing we support them.

SOIL: I guess in that way…we’ll never really be left behind.


How do you handle being left behind?

Note: A special, heartfelt thank you to baffledmum at:  Her post about “giving up” really inspired me. Check it out!


77 thoughts on “CONVERSATION WITH…The Soil…Feeling left behind by a flower…

  1. Oh, Cathi! I’m feeling with you – it must be so hard to live so far apart from your daughter and to know that it will take some time until you’ll see each other again in person. I’m really glad to live in the same city as my mum and see her very often. But as you said, her roots are left with you and she’s always a part of you no matter the distance. And I love the analogy of the soil and the rose that grows tatoos, eh thorns. 😉💕

    Liked by 3 people

  2. Such a difficult one this! We want our children to grow up & come into their own but it leaves us empty… I can’t imagine it! My husband wants us to migrate to Australia but I can’t even imagine leaving my mum behind, it’s the only thing stopping me. Why is life so difficult?! … Somebody really needs to invent a transportation machine which is cheep to use! Lol, if only! X
    Thank you for the shot out on my poem, I’m glad it spoke out to you… Stay strong! X

    Liked by 3 people

  3. I congratulate myself on a job well done raising them. And try to rejoice in the fact that I know when I’m no longer here that they will still live a full happy life. Sometimes it works!


  4. I don’t have children, Cathi, but your chat with the soil was so heartfelt and beautifully written that I can easily apply the learning to any separation, temporary or permanent, from someone we love. Thank you, and I hope you’re feeling better for having expressed your grief.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. 😢 Right there with you. It’s so hard! I got my feelings hurt when my daughter said she didn’t want to do FaceTime before she left for Scotland. I guess she had a change of heart and we have communicated this way several times. It’s kind of fun. How else do I deal with it? My husband and I are “dating” more and I have av ever widening circle of friends who are going through the same thing.

    Liked by 3 people

    • The closeness does seem to shift a little bit because of the physical distance. I believe there are endless phases in this crazy life, and I’m hoping daughter will speak to you one day when she is able to look at the world differently. These journeys are so hard.


  6. Our oldest son lives in Darwin, which is 3000km away. We speak – or to be more correct, do Face To Face, every week on our mobiles. It is so much better than the old fashioned phone. There are apps you can download for that – just need one on each phone. I think you can even do it through Facebook. Kids grow up, make their own lives and their own way. If we have done our work as parents to the best of our ability, they will have the skills, values and beliefs to be strong and able. That is as it should be. Learning to enjoy the freedom of empty nesting takes a bit of doing. But you know what? I wouldn’t want my kids back home, much as I love them !

    Liked by 2 people

    • Sorry about the strange comment before. My cat tapped my computer screen and my comment sent before I had finished it. Anyway, I was trying to say, I appreciate your honesty as I continue on this empty nester journey and try to come out on the other end. Years ago, when my daughter graduated from college, she lived at home for a while. I have to admit, I don’t miss waiting up until 3 a.m. for her to return home from her nights out. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      • Cats are so arrogant, aren’t they! Ours used to sit on top of the newspaper when we tried to read it. (pre computer days…)Our boys lived at home far longer than most kids. Marc was 28 and Christopher 24. Whilst it was lovely to know they were comfortable and happy to be with us, there comes a time when children need to leave the nest and make their own way. And then comes the time for us to settle into new ways of being too. A time to be and do things just for us. And it is all good.


  7. This is another very powerful post and so true! Your daughter IS always with you and you with her. I do recognize the sadness and longing.


  8. This is so beautiful and so eloquently describes the feelings. I have them too. I love your description of who you are. It totally describes me. I love the name of your blog. I am going now to read more!

    Liked by 1 person

  9. I’m coping by finding lots of new things to do, trying out stuff I was too scared to try when I was younger and getting out and about with my husband and friends. It is an enormous change in our lives when our children move on, no matter how proud we are of them, it hurts. I’m hoping, with time, we will readjust!

    Liked by 1 person

  10. It is so hard when our children grow up and move away. We miss them terribly, even though emotionally we are still very close. But you’re right, this is also the time to concentrate more on us, and to discover who we really are and what is left for us to do. When life gives you lemons……

    Liked by 1 person

  11. gosh-what a chord this struck with me. You do feel left behind when your children grow up and move on (as they ought to) I guess .. . growing up on a farm, we all stayed around-how very difficult it has been for me to lose that. It has taken me years to adjust-and I still miss those days and will cry after visits.

    Liked by 1 person

  12. We all have those lovely roots. I don’t handle being left behind well at all. My son left the nest, came back, and left again. He is literally 5 minutes from me. I can’t tell you the last time I saw him So miles really don’t matter. When we give them wings, they fly. Isn’t that what we wanted? Hang in there, Cathi. I feel your pain ❤️

    Liked by 1 person

  13. This post really stirs the heartstrings! My youngest just had his last formal, will graduate in 3 weeks, and so many emotions whirling around in my head. Yes, we want them to spread their wings and fly, but oh how hard it is to start that journey without us. I love the reference to the roots though, so true, we will always be connected to our children through those nourishing roots! Wishing you a happy Monday and a very happy week ahead!

    Liked by 1 person

  14. It IS hard to remember that they are growing/grown up, and they’re hardier if I let them go ahead and crawl around to the back side of the trellis, even if the sun’s not as bright back there.
    I remind myself that they can’t come back to me, if I don’t ever let them go…

    Liked by 2 people

  15. I grieved when my daughter moved far away. Literally, the next day she found out she had cancer. After that, I didn’t care if she was on Mars, just so she lived. Thankfully, she did. Since then, she’s had two children. I am so grateful.

    Liked by 1 person

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