The Almost Empty Nester: And so it begins...

Friday, May 20, 2016

And so it begins...

The senior countdown has begun. I have the Girl Child's cap and gown in my office, the gown staring at me, waiting for me to iron it. I would like to say I haven't had time, but if I were honest it's probably more that I'm avoiding it. It will happen, yes, but my heart is still adjusting.

I cried while making breakfast. The kids were already off to school. Nothing specific really happened. I just got to thinking about how, way too soon, she won't hug me before she goes to school. Say, "Love you, Mom!" as she floats out the door.

A friend asked Thing 2 yesterday how he felt about his sister leaving. Thing 2 said he would miss her. I swallowed tears. I'm not the only one who will have to adjust to her absence. She and her brothers are close. It will be a new normal for all of us.

This weekend is Baccalaureate. Next weekend, Graduation. There's also Senior Chapel, Senior Trip, Grad night, and so many "lasts" - the last time she'll eat lunch with her friends. The last high school rally. Last volleyball game. Last, last, last.  

And yet, so many firsts are to come. As I cried into my eggs this morning, I was aware that my tears were bittersweet. So my goodbyes, and yet so many hellos as well. This precious face with the big, blue eyes changed my life eighteen years ago. I can't imagine not seeing her every day,

listen to her and her dad watch baseball together, fussing over bad calls and critiquing plays.

I know, I know. She's not moving to Mars. She will come home. Visit. But it will be a new normal. Like every other part of parenting, this is a season. And seasons are continuously changing. And I'm grateful I can say that every season with this Girl Child has been so, much, fun. So many memories made, and so many more to be made. 

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