It's official. I have no children in high school. I have two in college now. The end of May was my youngest's high school graduation. It was just one more milestone in our lives that was both joyous and bittersweet. Both sets of grandparents came in for the event as well as friends. There was a new dress, shoes, and cake invited to the day. Pictures galore were taken and by the end of the session the tired smiles appeared. You know the ones..."hurry up and take the freakin picture" smile. Those were mainly done by the graduate.
One thing I noticed with this daughter's graduation was the comments from my older daughter who on that very stage as her sister was walking across she did so three years before that. Her comments were sweet...something I wasn't expecting I guess. I cried as I did three years ago and was so happy for my baby...who by the way graduated with honors (21st in her class of 369.) She looked beautiful but also very relieved to be done with high school. I wonder if she knows college is school too! hehehe.
You can say I graduated that day as well. It sank in that she is going to be leaving the nest in two months. Not that she won't still need me (and my money) but that she will have to make decisions as an adult and without permission of her parents in some cases (not with my money!) It sank in that I will not be able to call her and say "let's go to the movies" or "what do you want for dinner." It also sank in that she won' t be a room away when I want to borrow a CD or need her help with something on the computer. It occurred to me that I was being selfish. Well. Yes. I. Am. I did after all bring her into this world.
Today she drove to the college she has been accepted for Freshman Orientation. This, too, was another graduation. You see, until today, she has never driven on the interstate alone. Usually someone was in the car with her and it wasn't on I-75 that does straight through Atlanta, where there is rarely a good time to drive to. We routed the drive, had GPS and Google maps printed. She was confident and I was a wreck. Back in April, she drove us to the same college for a tour and almost killed us...for real, no exaggeration. She learned from that she said. I still was a major train wreck. I prayed and tried to let God take it all but you know what, a mom's worry just doesn't stop. She got there safely and I thanked God. Funny thing was the GPS took her on back roads and it was less traffic and about 20 min faster. God's hand in that one I say.
So she will be there till tomorrow afternoon, where at that time I will again be a train wreck of worry till she is home safely. We have texted a bit tonight and it seems to be going good. She did say she got a crappy dorm room LOL. I can't figure that out though, we were one of the first to apply for housing said the housing office and they assure her that she would get her first or second choice but had to put a third. She got the third. She will check into that tomorrow.
Empty nest hit this afternoon when I realized when I got home from work, she was not going to be home. This is not unusual as she often has plans and such but it made me think - this is what it will be like when she leaves for college. I didn't like it. I will get used to it I know. When the oldest left, I was relieved as our relationship was strained and it was a break we both needed. Now we are very close and I love it. I don't want to lose the closeness I have with youngest daughter.
This summer will be a summer of Graduations for me. Gosh. I am growing up too. hahaha.
If you had children that left the nest, how did you deal with the empty nest feeling?