It was with great intention that I pushed my oldest to reach for his dreams; to have the courage to follow them wherever they may lead. His senior year was filled with so much hope and trepidation as we began the process of college applications and auditions. Everything from what our weekend activities were, to what was on the daily calendar, was intentionally organized with one goal in mind; securing a place in a great program at a great college. What an exciting day it was when we heard the news that he had been accepted into a program at one of the colleges of his choice.
Another day dawned with beautiful sunshine and it was a day that would be filled with excitement and change. As I gathered my children around me, I spoke with them about being intentional in their lives. Relationships don’t just happen. I told them to reach out to one another with great intention throughout their lives and to cherish one another and their future families. Deep words for a monumental day from a mothers’ heart. After that it was off to college where we moved my son in and I watched as his sister and brothers doted on him and helped him set up his dorm room. With an aching heart I watched them kiss and hug goodbye. With shouts of, “See you soon!” we headed back home.
No matter how ready you think you are, nothing can really prepare you for the feelings that you go through when your child leaves for college. Yes, they will come to visit, and maybe even some come back for a period of time. But it is different. Nothing will ever really be the same. I also realize that I was raising an independent soul to go forth into this world and live his life. But, I had loved being with my children. Starting and ending the day together, intimately sharing life.
The first week was pretty emotional. Sometimes I felt such happiness for my son that he was in the program of his dreams and loving every minute of it! Sometimes I felt jealous of all the new friends he was making; I wanted to be a part of it too. Other times I would burst into tears seemingly unprovoked. Lots of times I felt sad, like I was grieving. He came into my world, this child of mine, and took my heart by storm. He dwelt in the innermost reaches of my heart and embodied all of my dreams. How am I supposed to feel now that this child of mine is reaching beyond what I can give him and venturing out into the rest of his life? How do we make this transition?