From Chicken Soup for the Soul Daily Inspirations for Women

January 21

When she was little, she clung to me and said, “You’re my best friend in the whole wide world.” She used to cry when I went away for a night or a weekend. “Someday you’ll go away and leave me,” I would tell her, “and you won’t miss me at all.”

She’s only fourteen now, and though she doesn’t know it, mentally she’s prepared to go. She came home from school with a homework assignment: choose six people with whom you would choose to be stuck on a deserted island. That night, when she recited the names of the people she would take, there was no mention of me. She chose her brother, her godfather, TV character Doogie Howser, Anne of Green Gables. I never thought for a minute that I wouldn’t make the list. I immediately began to sulk.

“You know, Mom, you’re being very immature,” she told me.

I know I am. But that’s because our roles have suddenly reversed. The little girl who clung to me clings no more. Instead I am the one watching her move on and asking,“Why can’t you take me?”

Beverly Beckham

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