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Baby Come Back

A memoir by a mother whose child prepares for college



MOTHER NATURE, AS THE NAME IMPLIES, IS UNPREDICTABLE. She gives you an amazing miracle in the form of the sweetest baby the world has ever seen. In the first instant of that little life, your heart opens wide and your child crawls inside and takes up residence there. Minutes, hours, years go by. He/she thrums away in your heart, coloring your every move, every decision and every emotion. You get used to that thrumming; it becomes part of you. You watch all your child’s firsts with love and pride-filled eyes. You don’t react with the terror that grips you when they take their first tumble; instead, you smile, suppress the urge to lunge for them, and encourage them to get up and go on their way. And because they didn’t see the fear in your heart, they do just that; get up and go on their way. That’s only one of the many times you do that for them, but it pales in comparison to what is required when they go away to college.

As long as they are in the house, underfoot, you feel their place in your heart is still fully occupied. You don’t think twice as you enthusiastically jump into the car and drive hundreds of miles to walk campus after campus to help your child find the right school. You hold your thoughts inside, size him/her up out of the corner of your eye and hope that on the long drive home, they give you some inkling of their thoughts. All the while, they are still with you. They still need you to buy milk, help them sort out a problem with a teacher, and sometimes they might even want to watch a movie with you.

Then, the colleges are chosen, the applications are mailed off, and the acceptance letters come in. Before you know it, you’re writing out the check that assures your child’s admittance into the college of their choice. You shop for clothes. You buy special linens to fit the dorm-room bed, and you  imagine the proud day when you’ll drive them to school to get settled into their new life.

And this is when Mother Nature plays her dirty trick.

Being the brave mother you are, you wave goodbye, and not looking back, drive home to a place you don’t recognize. Everything is where it was but there’s a quiet you’ve never experienced before. You and the family dog stand and stare at the now clean room that until a few days ago was a smelly sty so dense with teenage detritus you couldn’t even enter. And you remember your child sitting in the midst, happily ensconced in the cacophony of video game monsters being killed, rock music, and IM dings from the computer.

This new quiet is positively deafening.

Dear old Mother Nature doesn’t prepare you for the cold, harsh emptiness of the empty nest. Your child is still thrumming away in your heart but there’s nothing for you to do. You try and turn your mind away, but thoughts of them keep creeping back in. Will they remember to brush their teeth, do their laundry, or even at least once, change those specially bought sheets? Mother Nature gives them to you and then, just like that, takes them away. You spend their entire existence holding on to them for dear life and now you’re supposed to let them go? It’s impossible. Yet, as you stand disoriented in the middle of your new old home, it finally hits you; letting them go is probably the biggest gesture of love you’ll ever make. Now you just have to figure
out how to quiet the thrumming in your heart.

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Profiles

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August 2017

Who knew? Silvermine Arts Center, in our own backyard, is one of the oldest artist communities in the United States. This summer, Whitney Museum’s David Kiehl curates the 2017...

Where:
Silvermine Arts Center
1037 Silvermine Road
New Canaan, CT  06840
View map »


Website »

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Each year Stamford Downtown hosts a distinguished outdoor sculpture exhibit designed to attract both local and regional audiences. Art in Public Places Outdoor Sculpture exhibit features sculptures...

Cost: Free

Where:
Stamford Downtown
, CT


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"From first frame to last, Christopher Nolan's Dunkirk is a monumental achievement, a World War II epic of staggering visual spectacle (see it in IMAX if you can) that hits you...

Cost: $15 for Adults. $12 for children 12 & Under.

Where:
The Maritime Aquarium
10 North Water Street
Norwalk, CT
View map »


Website »

More information

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Who knew? Silvermine Arts Center, in our own backyard, is one of the oldest artist communities in the United States. This summer, Whitney Museum’s David Kiehl curates the 2017...

Where:
Silvermine Arts Center
1037 Silvermine Road
New Canaan, CT  06840
View map »


Website »

More information

Each year Stamford Downtown hosts a distinguished outdoor sculpture exhibit designed to attract both local and regional audiences. Art in Public Places Outdoor Sculpture exhibit features sculptures...

Cost: Free

Where:
Stamford Downtown
, CT


Website »

More information

"From first frame to last, Christopher Nolan's Dunkirk is a monumental achievement, a World War II epic of staggering visual spectacle (see it in IMAX if you can) that hits you...

Cost: $15 for Adults. $12 for children 12 & Under.

Where:
The Maritime Aquarium
10 North Water Street
Norwalk, CT
View map »


Website »

More information

Show More...
Show Less...

Who knew? Silvermine Arts Center, in our own backyard, is one of the oldest artist communities in the United States. This summer, Whitney Museum’s David Kiehl curates the 2017...

Where:
Silvermine Arts Center
1037 Silvermine Road
New Canaan, CT  06840
View map »


Website »

More information

Each year Stamford Downtown hosts a distinguished outdoor sculpture exhibit designed to attract both local and regional audiences. Art in Public Places Outdoor Sculpture exhibit features sculptures...

Cost: Free

Where:
Stamford Downtown
, CT


Website »

More information

"From first frame to last, Christopher Nolan's Dunkirk is a monumental achievement, a World War II epic of staggering visual spectacle (see it in IMAX if you can) that hits you...

Cost: $15 for Adults. $12 for children 12 & Under.

Where:
The Maritime Aquarium
10 North Water Street
Norwalk, CT
View map »


Website »

More information

“Appropriate,” the 2014 Obie Award winner for Best New American Play, will be staged at Westport Country Playhouse, from August 15 through September 2. The story of family secrets...

Cost: Tickets start at $30

Where:
Westport Country Playhouse
25 Powers Court
Westport, CT  06880
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Sing choral works by the great composers on Tuesday evenings starting August 8th. Music on the Hill hosts a series of four stand-alone music reading sessions, each led by a different...

Cost: Free. Donations welcome

Where:
Wilton Presbyterian Church
48 New Canaan Road (Rte. #106)
Wilton, CT  06897
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Sponsor: Music on the Hill
Telephone: 203-529-3133
Contact Name: Music on the Hill
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Who knew? Silvermine Arts Center, in our own backyard, is one of the oldest artist communities in the United States. This summer, Whitney Museum’s David Kiehl curates the 2017...

Where:
Silvermine Arts Center
1037 Silvermine Road
New Canaan, CT  06840
View map »


Website »

More information

Each year Stamford Downtown hosts a distinguished outdoor sculpture exhibit designed to attract both local and regional audiences. Art in Public Places Outdoor Sculpture exhibit features sculptures...

Cost: Free

Where:
Stamford Downtown
, CT


Website »

More information

"From first frame to last, Christopher Nolan's Dunkirk is a monumental achievement, a World War II epic of staggering visual spectacle (see it in IMAX if you can) that hits you...

Cost: $15 for Adults. $12 for children 12 & Under.

Where:
The Maritime Aquarium
10 North Water Street
Norwalk, CT
View map »


Website »

More information

“Appropriate,” the 2014 Obie Award winner for Best New American Play, will be staged at Westport Country Playhouse, from August 15 through September 2. The story of family secrets...

Cost: Tickets start at $30

Where:
Westport Country Playhouse
25 Powers Court
Westport, CT  06880
View map »


Website »

More information

Show More...
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Doctor of Oriental Medicine, Jampa Mackenzie Stewart of Valley Spirit Cooperative and Wellness Center in Washington, CT presents Tai Chi/QiGong - An Introduction. Tai Chi/QiGong helps develop...

Cost: Free and open to the public.

Where:
Gunn Memorial Library
5 Wykeham Road
Washington, CT  06793
View map »


Website »

More information

Who knew? Silvermine Arts Center, in our own backyard, is one of the oldest artist communities in the United States. This summer, Whitney Museum’s David Kiehl curates the 2017...

Where:
Silvermine Arts Center
1037 Silvermine Road
New Canaan, CT  06840
View map »


Website »

More information

Each year Stamford Downtown hosts a distinguished outdoor sculpture exhibit designed to attract both local and regional audiences. Art in Public Places Outdoor Sculpture exhibit features sculptures...

Cost: Free

Where:
Stamford Downtown
, CT


Website »

More information

"From first frame to last, Christopher Nolan's Dunkirk is a monumental achievement, a World War II epic of staggering visual spectacle (see it in IMAX if you can) that hits you...

Cost: $15 for Adults. $12 for children 12 & Under.

Where:
The Maritime Aquarium
10 North Water Street
Norwalk, CT
View map »


Website »

More information

“Appropriate,” the 2014 Obie Award winner for Best New American Play, will be staged at Westport Country Playhouse, from August 15 through September 2. The story of family secrets...

Cost: Tickets start at $30

Where:
Westport Country Playhouse
25 Powers Court
Westport, CT  06880
View map »


Website »

More information

Show More...
Show Less...

Who knew? Silvermine Arts Center, in our own backyard, is one of the oldest artist communities in the United States. This summer, Whitney Museum’s David Kiehl curates the 2017...

Where:
Silvermine Arts Center
1037 Silvermine Road
New Canaan, CT  06840
View map »


Website »

More information

Each year Stamford Downtown hosts a distinguished outdoor sculpture exhibit designed to attract both local and regional audiences. Art in Public Places Outdoor Sculpture exhibit features sculptures...

Cost: Free

Where:
Stamford Downtown
, CT


Website »

More information

"From first frame to last, Christopher Nolan's Dunkirk is a monumental achievement, a World War II epic of staggering visual spectacle (see it in IMAX if you can) that hits you...

Cost: $15 for Adults. $12 for children 12 & Under.

Where:
The Maritime Aquarium
10 North Water Street
Norwalk, CT
View map »


Website »

More information

“Appropriate,” the 2014 Obie Award winner for Best New American Play, will be staged at Westport Country Playhouse, from August 15 through September 2. The story of family secrets...

Cost: Tickets start at $30

Where:
Westport Country Playhouse
25 Powers Court
Westport, CT  06880
View map »


Website »

More information

Show More...
Show Less...

Music Theatre of Connecticut MainStage, Fairfield County’s professional award-winning theatre company, presents the final installment of MTC’s Hot Summer Nights series, An Evening with...

Cost: $25-$35 for single tickets. Reservations suggested.

Where:
Music Theatre of Connecticut
509 Westport Ave.
Norwalk, CT  06851
View map »


Website »

More information

Who knew? Silvermine Arts Center, in our own backyard, is one of the oldest artist communities in the United States. This summer, Whitney Museum’s David Kiehl curates the 2017...

Where:
Silvermine Arts Center
1037 Silvermine Road
New Canaan, CT  06840
View map »


Website »

More information

Each year Stamford Downtown hosts a distinguished outdoor sculpture exhibit designed to attract both local and regional audiences. Art in Public Places Outdoor Sculpture exhibit features sculptures...

Cost: Free

Where:
Stamford Downtown
, CT


Website »

More information

"From first frame to last, Christopher Nolan's Dunkirk is a monumental achievement, a World War II epic of staggering visual spectacle (see it in IMAX if you can) that hits you...

Cost: $15 for Adults. $12 for children 12 & Under.

Where:
The Maritime Aquarium
10 North Water Street
Norwalk, CT
View map »


Website »

More information

Ghosts, ghouls and goblins greet visitors to the historic Sheffield Island Lighthouse, which is decorated to provide thrills and chills for youngsters of all ages (only two rooms are kept dark)....

Cost: Free aside from ferry tickets

Where:
Norwalk Seaport Association Dock
4 N. Water Streets
Norwalk, CT
View map »


Website »

More information

“Appropriate,” the 2014 Obie Award winner for Best New American Play, will be staged at Westport Country Playhouse, from August 15 through September 2. The story of family secrets...

Cost: Tickets start at $30

Where:
Westport Country Playhouse
25 Powers Court
Westport, CT  06880
View map »


Website »

More information

Show More...
Show Less...
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