Don’t leave me. This is not the pathetic whimper of a helpless child, but the heartfelt plea of an adult who knows what she now has and fears the fleeting nature of existence. But you are unafraid, and teach me still. And I know that I left you first. But still, Don’t ever leave me. It’s not that I need you anymore, Except for the occasional, insistent need I feel for your voice Your recipes Your jokes Your laughter Your advice Your praise And the confirmation of our connectedness. Why do I still care that you accept what I have chosen? Is it because you are the parents of three new generations and I, just one? Is it because you have lived more, know more, love more, hope and pray for so much more…for me…and I fear that I might disappoint? Is it because I am you—but more…and less? You must never leave me. I am still your child, Still your little girl, though I’ve kept her hidden deep inside, Yet now a grown woman who recognizes and appreciates you increasingly each day, Becoming more like you—and more like me…and contented with this new composition! You will always be with me. I will see you in my mirror, Will hear you in my dreams, Will feel you in my blood, And will hold you…forever…in my heart, So I smile, inside and out, knowing you will never leave me!