So, we have had an exciting Road Trip to leave Jasmine off to University. The Stockies have always had music on such trips. It used to be the old CD for holidays. This time it was an 8 hour playlist made up of favourites by all 4 of us and Daddy adding all the old favourites like The Sawdoctors - “get the wasp off my sandwich”! 

This mix was a whole lot more poignant and deeply emotional. 

Jasmine herself chose a Maisie Peters (she’s always teaching her dad about new artists) song called The Place We Were Made and as I listened in the tedium of an English motorway I heard loud and clear what was in her ‘leaving home’ mind:


I know every streetlight

And maybe the colours will fade

This is the place we were made

By the late nights and the fires on the beach

Made by the small town secrets we'd keep

All that I know is

No matter how far away

This is the place we were made



Caitlin was intentional in her choices too. She carefully picked Belfast boy Ryan McMullan’s Letting Go For A Little While. His leaving song is from the child, not the parents, point of view as no doubt he goes off on tour: 


I know you love me, but now it's time to let me go

And I know you're sad but please don't cry

After all it's not goodbye

We're just letting go for a little while


Since the release of Deacon Blue’s great new record City Of Love Janice has been loving the song Intervals, surely about such moments in the Ross/McIntosh family life, and singing loudly the lines: 


When you grow up to be a star

Don't leave home for anything less than you are


For me another of this year’s top records has been tugging my heart strings, preparing for this seismic moment in our family life in general and Jasmine’s in particular. Jason Isbell is at the very early stages of watching his child grow. Letting You Go begins with him strapping his daughter into her baby car seat. At the end of this road trip I will be unclipping Jasmine’s for a last time, in some symbolic sense. Tears were creeping when this one came up on shuffle:


Being your daddy comes natural

The roses just know how to grow

It's easy to see that you'll get where you're going

But the hard part is letting you go

The hard part is letting you go


I am a very proud father this weekend. I am so inspired by how my daughters have turned out. Nothing like the plan I had for them, they are living a far better vocational plan of their own and prayerfully God's. As Jazzi starts International Development at Reading University I am excited for her and believe she is going to make her contribution. What an adventure! What a girl! BUT still… “the hard part is letting you go”… love you baby girl!


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