First, a definition. What is separation? Well, assuming one understands that we form attachments at very young ages, we could define separation as the process of moving away emotionally from those attachments.
Often separation is about the process of separating from one’s family of birth and attaching emotionally to friends and to a family of our own forming. And then, if you have children, the separation continues, as your children grow and gradually separate from you.
Sometimes separation is about losing a connection with a close friend, like when I was single and a close friend got married. My friend became more connected to her husband, as one should, so there was the loss of the emotional closeness, and she also moved away physically.
At other times separation can just be the process of leaving a thing, instead of a person. We are going away at the end of this week, and I have a hard time separating from my kitchen!
Tonight separation was about going to my son’s eighth grade graduation. I’m sure part of the reason I did not enjoy it was because my eldest “baby” is growing up. And I have to suffer through another graduation this week, as my youngest “baby” graduates from kindergarten. Torture for moms, that’s what graduation feels like.
Years ago, a non-Jewish friend who had grown up in a mostly Jewish neighborhood told me that she thought Jewish kids have a harder time separating from their parents than non-Jewish kids. I think there is some truth to that. What do you think? Is this too much of a generalization?
Have you found separating difficult? Any more so than those around you? If you are a parent, do you linger at the door when you drop off your pre-schooler (I was told that my husband should start bringing my daughter to school, and we agreed. Drop-offs have reportedly gone much smoother recently).
This post was inspired by these posts about separation:
Eclectic Jewish Thoughts: Letter to Yated about Father-in-Law
Orthonomics: Same Yated Letter