I recall that one of my blog entries at that time was entitled But I don't want you to go.... and it was filled with my deep concerns and neurotic carry on about how Zoe could ever cope without me, and also what my life would look like without her around 24/7. I know that at that point in my life I just could not imagine what it would feel like or look like to not have Zoe there all of the time, it was such a foreign idea to me; an idea that I didn't really want to entertain.
And now here I am, preparing to see Zoe graduate from University tomorrow and wondering what it was that I was so worried about when she left home a few years ago and about how my life and hers, turned out to be just fine, in fact better than fine, pretty damn great! And there is something really comforting about that. You see, I now have the knowledge that in spite of our greatest fears and anxieties we can adjust, we can move forward and we can achieve marvellous things as well.
Tomorrow Zoe will take to the stage in her gown and tassel mortar-board and she will become a University graduate, the first University graduate in our family and we just couldn't be more proud of her. And she did it on her own, in a new town without us beside her to bolster the waves and lead the way, she did it all on her own. Now I could say that it was because we are such epic parents that she could manage all of this, but I honestly can't take the credit for all of her hard work. This one is Zoe's and Zoe's alone, she did it and she did it so well that she's been invited back to complete her honours as well. Woohoo - you go girl!
This whole experience has not only made Zoe grow up and learn about life, but it has also made Craig and I grow up and learn about life as well. We've changed a lot over the last few years that Zoe has left our home, and we have had a glimpse at what life looks like when you have less chicks in the nest to tend to as well. And you know what? We survived and we thrived, and we are all still close and we all enjoy each others company. I also now know for sure that just because your chicks fly the coop, that doesn't mean that they won't come back to roost for a spell every now and then, and that they aren't still your chicks in every way.
Letting them fly is difficult because you're so damn worried that they will fall without you, but I cannot tell how incredibly good it feels when they don't fall at all, but when they actually soar to greater heights than you could ever reach yourself. Words just cannot describe it and nothing I write will ever do it justice, so I am not even going to try, but I'm pretty sure that you get the idea.
Release Date: 2012
Running Time: 98 mins
This is the first feature length movie that has been shot entirely in Saudi Arabia, and the first feature length film to have ever been made by a female Saudi director - Haifaa al-Mansour. Wadjda won numerous awards at international film festivals and was nominated for Best Foreign Language Film at the 86th Academy Awards and the BAFTA Awards.
The story revolves around Wadjda, an 11 year old Saudi girl who dreams of owning her own bicycle. But riding bikes is frowned upon for girls, and her mother is constantly distracted by her husband who is planning to take a second wife, so Wadjda plans to win the money for herself by competing in a Quran recital competition.
This is a beautiful story about the power of the human spirit. Through the eyes of the director we also get small glimpses of the everyday hardships that the women in Saudi Arabia face on a day to day basis; presented in a matter of fact and non judgmental way that works incredibly well.
If only there were more determined girls like Wadjda in Saudi Arabia then maybe there would be more freedoms and less limitations for the women, and this movie beautifully illustrates how something as simple as a bicycle can be so empowering.
FINAL SAY: I will get a bike, and then I will beat you in a race.
3 Chilli Peppers