Wednesday, August 14, 2019

Adjusting To A New Way of Life

I sat down intending to write something completely different, because I had a song on my heart and some thoughts on fear and how it debilitates me on an almost daily basis.  And yet, this is what came out, so I suppose it is what I needed to write about tonight.  Maybe after my third neck surgery happening in two weeks, I can work on that.  But for now, prepare for a cheesy mommy blog post, okay?  

It's hard to believe that summer is basically over.  Three of my kids have gone back to school, and I am preparing to drop my oldest off at college on Friday.   Which brings me to a funny story I thought I would share here.  We went to Rolla over the weekend to say goodbye to Katherine's boyfriend who has moved there for college.  On the drive, I was fine.  In general, I was fine.  When we got there, I was fine.  For about 30 seconds.  And then, I was definitely NOT fine.

So, picture this.  We're arriving at Missouri University of Science and Technology.  Kris is driving.  I'm in the passenger seat.  Katherine is in the back.  It isn't the college she is going to.  I'm not dropping her off there, or even that same day.  This is just where her boyfriend will be going to school.  I like him, quite a bit actually, but I wasn't emotional or anything because we were at his school.  No.  It's much worse.  We were pulling in, trying to find a spot to park.  I look to my left, and I see this man and woman, who are obviously parents to the scrawny, blonde-headed boy I saw emerge from the car with a couple of boxes.

That, my friends, is when I lost it.  Completely.  Just started crying.  I was suddenly filled with such intense emotion.  Much of it was a very physical feeling in my gut.  My mind quickly flashed to this coming Friday, moving my daughter into her suite, helping her unpack (if she wants me to), seeing her transition from kid to adult in the blink of an eye, hugging my daughter as I say goodbye and she embarks on a new chapter of her life.  And I was overwhelmed with a deep feeling of longing to stay in that moment with her for forever.  My joy at watching her grow into an amazing young woman was also spilling over in that moment, when I saw that kid I had never seen before and likely never will again.  You have these moments in your life that you will never forget.  This was one of those moments for me.

Guys, she's only moving 7 minutes away!  There was NO reason for me to be crying.  I am an emotional person to be sure, but overall, I am not pining for my kids to never grow up I'm also not rushing them, per se and move away.  Essentially, in that moment, I saw the last nineteen years flash before my eyes.

Katherine as a baby, and Kris repeating "She's so beautiful."  Katherine at age 5 with a wisdom most don't possess, talking to me about death the night our friend and two of her boys died in a car accident.  Katherine at age 6 with her arms folded, glaring at me because she's mad about something.  Katherine holding my hand during Mamma Mia while they sing "Slipping Through My Fingers."   Katherine giving up something she wants because she knows it will make someone else happy.  Katherine crying next to me while we watch sad movies.  Katherine and I laughing together, because we're both hilarious.

But also, what won out was the immense pride that I have in who she is, her heart for people and animals alike, the woman she is becoming, and the true friend she has always been to me.

I am going to miss her, for sure.  But as she keeps saying, it's not like she won't still come home.  I told her that she might not, once she gets there and makes new friends and wants to hang out with them all the time.  She might forget about me.  She assured me, though, that she would still come home all the time.  Because she will need to do her laundry.  I knew what she meant.  She meant she won't have money to wash her clothes as she begins the broke college student part of her life.  She meant she will miss me too and I will always be her best friend.




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