Confidently, she climbed unto the bus, denying any and all attention or offers of help from the other bus users, simply by lifting her chin, averting her eyes and smiling a calm capability.
I can recall that day as clearly as yesterday even though a couple of decades have passed.
Today I chuckle to myself as I see the same confidence in that lifted chin and averted eyes as she gets on the street car. My heart swells as the memory of her first day of school merge with today’s transit through Toronto. Where has the time gone? The cliche of yesterday’s generation has become my reality.
Her fifth year birthday milestone left me feeling ill prepared. I wasn’t ready to share her with the world. I panicked, not sure I had fulfilled my checklist of things I needed to teach her in order to protect her from the world.
I roll my eyes at this reflection. If I knew then what I know now. Just full of cliches today.
My life has become a cliche? Yep.
She proudly showed me around her city. We did it up; city bus, street car and subway. She guided me with ease to her favourite spaces. The weather was warm and sunny, further sealing our enjoyment of each other and all our sites.
It is official. My child is no longer. A young woman she has become. It has happened seemingly by magic. A college graduate when I can still visualise her first step.
We went to the theatre together. I found myself watching her instead of the stage. Her beauty is easy to melt into but it was her expression which held my attention. She was fully engaged in the play, completely unaware of her surroundings. She was in her element. Theatre. Her passion for that art is undeniable.
An actor herself, having graduated from the theatre arts program, I know she aches to be on stage. Perhaps, one day her dream will come true.
In the meantime, she has landed herself employment to pay her way. Now the hunt for her first adult apartment is under way! Leaving her student apartment is something she looks forward to.
Shortly, my daughter will no longer share the same address with me. We will probably never live in the same town again. How strange is that? Incredible, but I am far from sad.
Oh no! I couldn’t be happier. It is thrilling to see my child start her own life, make her own way and most of all be happy! These are the years, albiet another cliche, to remember. I know because I remember my freedom years very well thank you!
As we hugged goodbye, I was overwhelmed with pride for my first born babe.
She will be just fine. She is having the time of her life.
She has gone from school bus to street car in a blink of my eye.