Today I had one of those waves. I’ve had them before but today’s felt more real. Maybe because there are 29 (she’s counting) more days until she leaves for college. Today she’s at orientation and it’s just me and the boys. I was making them a snack when it hit me — this will be my next three years. Her gone and me with them.
I knew this was coming. But like any change it takes your breath away. Think about the time you had to leave a relationship but didn’t really want to. Or change jobs when you loved your co-workers. Or the time that someone close to you died and you just felt lost. No matter whether the change is forced upon us or we make it ourselves, change is a deep sigh event.
I’m not sure my daughter and I are handling this upcoming change very well. She’s moody, I’m sad (and moody) and the boys are just fed up with the two of us. So, as I was swimming tonight, I came up with these “suggestions” on how to deal with this change (or any change for that matter):
1. Nothing’s forever.
While I feel like her leaving means it’s forever going to be different, it’s not like she’s never coming back (please remind me of this when I’m heading home after moving her in!). The alternative to her doing well in high school and getting into the college of her dreams, would be her staying home and working at the local Walgreens. With that in perspective, get a move on honey!
2. You can’t protect from mistakes.
This is tough. I just want to protect her and make sure she’s safe. But here’s the real truth: She’ll make mistakes. I made 10 before lunch today. She’ll learn from them and likely be smarter than me. Plus, my kids know they can call on me for anything, anytime night or day. They know I’ll love them and support them unconditionally, even when I don’t support their choices. Please remind your kids of this today.
3. Don’t be a on-line freak.
It would be easy to stalk our kids on social media but I’ve realized that I’d rather hear it from them rather than pictures their friends post — “Hear that kids??”
4. I know she still needs mom.
I know I’ll get a text to make her favorite granola and ship it to her. Or a late night call about a drama issue at school. She’ll want her bed and it’s nice to know there’s always another home to relax in. Plus, it’s time for my boys to get some more focus and attention from their mother (although, they may not think so!).
So, the moment came and went. The boys saw my panic, hugged me and reminded me that they loved me. It’s all good and their growing up will bring me right into my next phase of life. Something to keep looking forward to, right???.
Have a great night!