They made various cameos in New York over the years, but I mostly went to visit them because at first I had roommates and once David and I got married our tiny Manhattan apartment was barely capable of accommodating the two of us, much less any overnight guests.
This all changed when we moved into our new house over a year ago. All of a sudden we had a kitchen table and a real living room and two guest rooms with actual beds in them. We had room for people to come and visit and stay with us, and visit they did.
Every couple of months, in between our trips to Cleveland and Pittsburgh for extra family time, my parents drive in for a long weekend at our house. This past weekend was one of those weekends.
It was 9:00 on Wednesday night and pouring rain when the knock came at my back door. Dripping wet, my parents came in loaded down with luggage, books to read, and boxes filled with the results of the Costco run my dad made for me in Pittsburgh the day before they came because I didn't have the time to do it myself.
And suddenly, my world was righted.
I have been a little off kilter lately. Out of sorts, if you will. There has been a little more anxiety and a little less fun filling my days. A little more worry and a little less laughter. A little more fear and a little less excitement. And I know that these are the kinds of things that ebb and flow. That it is frighteningly normal to spend some days here and there feeling out of the ordinary and not at all like yourself and there is not much you can do but wait for these feelings to run their course.
But I don't like it all that much. Not at all.
So I spent much of the past few weeks counting down to the minute my parents would come through the door, sure that I would feel better once they were there. And I did. Four days in my house with them and with David calmed my mind and healed the pieces of me that have felt confused, broken and beaten down from time to time these past months. That have felt like the proverbial light at the end of the tunnel may still be miles away.
Being with them made me remember that I am still me, even when I feel like someone utterly new, and that these days that seem so complex and consuming now won't always loom quite so large. That this too shall pass, and that it is best to just put my head down and forge straight on, rather than dwell on the what-ifs and the uncertainty of it all. They reminded me that I am doing the very best that I can and that sometimes it is ok to just let go and leap and trust that there will be a soft landing below.
When I stood outside and waved good-bye yesterday as my parents pulled out of my driveway and pointed their car towards home I felt better, happier, and a whole lot lighter for having spent those days together. And when I walked back inside and closed the door I knew one thing with absolute certainty.
Sometimes a girl just needs her parents.
No matter how old she may be.