Posted by: Mark Wollemann: On the move | November 13, 2011

A special delivery is on the way


During the three months we’ve been gone, we’ve seen and done so much and the time has flown by. But soon. Oh, sooooo soon, we get to reconnect with our kid. One week. Exactly one week. Our spirits are soaring.

While we miss our friends and our families, those “disconnects” pale in comparison to the ache we feel being so far away from our daughter. Jenna is 22. A college graduate. She’s working. She’s paying her bills (we hope). She’s developing into the kind of fun, interesting, thoughtful and good citizen we always hoped she’d be. We miss bearing witness to that.

We know all you parents out there understand the pull of your kids. And we also know many of you (if not most) have felt the pangs of sadness and pride when your young ‘uns venture off into the world, heading all over the globe. We feel that, too. But we feel something else. We feel uprooted and we feel like we yanked Jenna’s roots, too. We don’t have the comfort of our home, her childhood home, to serve as the magnet that pulls her back to us. We don’t have that soft landing pad for all of us to share. And while we’ve bravely said “home is where we gather,” I’m not sure we completely believe that, either. I guess we’ll see next Sunday.

These past few days, Melody and I have done our best to dance around the subject of Jenna’s visit. We’re preparing the nest the best we can. And we had a nice talk on Skype last night. We’re excited to get her here and to show her our life in Blagoevgrad; our restaurants, our school, our town.

But even before she arrives, we’re having a hard time muffling the sadness we know we’ll feel when she leaves us here. It’ll be at least six more months until we see her again. It’ll be a long six months. But we’re not entirely certain (since everything is a first for us) how long those six months will feel. I guess we’ll soon find out.

Anyway … we’ll savor the seven days we have. We’ll revel in being a family. And then we’ll hunker down for the long, cold winter. We’ll throw ourselves into the final weeks of this semester. We’ll start planning for next semester. We’ll find someplace interesting to visit for our winter break (We’ve got three weeks or so. Any suggestions? We’re especially interested in very inexpensive suggestions.)

Then we’ll start all over missing our kid, our families, our friends. And we’ll see you in June (or sooner, if you can find your way to Eastern Europe!).



  1. Oh Mark, what memories your blog brought back! You left our home to venture out to your first job. I knew you didn’t have enough $ in your pocket but needed to let you go. And you went so far away and it
    was many months before we saw you again. But we allow our children to take off, that’s our job. Jenna will thrive, just as you have, because you and Melody have done your job well!!! Love, mom

  2. What your Mom said!! Ya miss ’em when you don’t see ’em,, but you know you did your job when they can do their part, and do it well! Have a great time!

    Oh yeah, nice work on your blog!

  3. This last blog just makes my heart swell! You are all so fortunate to have these feelings.
    I remember a quote I had posted on our refrigerator for YEARS and I still have in my “Misc.” file.
    ” The two lasting gifts we owe our children are ROOTS and WINGS”
    Enjoy your time with Jenna, She is so cool!
    Hi Jenna and Melody, too
    I so enjoy reading both blogs.

  4. Sally …i love that. Roots and wings. My new mantra. Hugs!

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