For a long time, Celia and I walked together.
Around the time she turned twelve, she grew afraid, and refused to go with me any more.
Well, I say "refused." She screamed when I asked, tears streaming down her face. She begged me not to go.
But I always walk. I started doing it on my own.
That first year was very difficult. Celia would grip the back garden gate, her knuckles white, face blanched, and watch me leave. Hours later, she would sometimes still be there, shaking and crying, saying, "Mom!" over and over, as she watched me return.