The Almost Empty Nester: My Roller Coaster Of Emotion

Saturday, September 6, 2014

My Roller Coaster Of Emotion

In my last blog I talked about how much I don't like change. Well, we had a big one recently. Due to a weird medical issue, Thing 1 isn't playing football this year. He's fine and will recover without issues, but because of the timing of the treatment needed, he won't be playing football.

The upside of the roller coaster of emotion I'm riding has me totally fine with this because as much as I've loved watching football my whole life, watching someone I love play it is a whole other ball game, pun intended. It's awful. As a mom, to sit in the stands and watch while your precious man child is potentially mutilated during every play is a nightmare. Every gray hair on my head (that I cover monthly) I blame on the sport of football. So, yes, I will admit that part of me was relieved when we made the decision for Thing 1 to sit this season out.

The downside of the roller coaster finds me sobbing over his jersey when he gave it to me to return to the school. (Yes, Thing 1 saw me and hugged me while wondering, I'm sure, what alien had overtaken his mom. Bless his football player sized heart.) And even still, I find myself getting teary when I see on Facebook pictures of his teammates at their games and my heart hurts. It hurts for what isn't. It hurts for what is.

My dear friends and Hubby question why I even sit and ride this roller coaster and quite frankly, I'm questioning it myself. But I think it all comes back to that little thing I hate called change. As stressful as football is for me to watch, I was ready for it. The season was part of the plan. Football was part of the plan for Thing 1. And funny enough, he's fine. He's moved on. He's student council president, he's focusing on school. He's golden. His crazy mom? Not so much. As I stated before, it takes me a little longer to adjust to change.

Something similar happened with Girly recently too. She's played softball her whole life. (Yes, we like sports in our family.) But now she's fallen in love with volleyball and is thinking of giving up softball. (She's six feet tall. It's not all that surprising.) She's thought it through, prayed about it and is fine with her decision. I, on the other hand, find myself getting misty eyed as I pass pictures in the hallway at home of her six year-old cherub face grinning from under a ball cap and holding a hot pink softball bat. Why? Because it's change.

The roller coaster goes up. And it goes back down.

For some reason, when they were little, the changes just came and were a part of life. I wonder if the changes now are tough because so many of them have to do with the kids making decisions for themselves? Hmmm, there's something to ponder.

Not playing football was a decision Hubby and I made as parents, but Thing 1 was a part of the process and has made his peace with it. Girly is old enough to decide many of these things for herself so, although she seeks our guidance, the final choice is hers. Which leads me to another struggle I have - being a control freak and all of this is beyond my control.

But that's the Tilt-A-Whirl. I need to get off this roller coaster first.

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