My daughter and I toured a couple of colleges this weekend, up near Boston. We bonded during horrible rush hour traffic on the way up Friday night, ate cheap Italian food in the middle of Podunk, and slept side by side in a remote Marriott.
“In less than a year I’ll be living alone,” my daughter stated. “I’ll never live with grown-ups again until I find someone of my own to live with.”
Oh boy. In the back of my mind, hidden away somewhere, I knew this to be true, but hearing it out loud was like an unexpected slap to my cheek. My baby girl is almost all grown up. She is leaving me soon.
I remember when she was in my stomach, hiccuping.
I remember when she looked at me after the obstetrician placed her in my arms, her eyes locking with mine, as if to say, “Hi! So, that’s what you look like! Nice to meet you.”
I remember loving her every minute of every day.
I remember worrying.
“When I grow up I’m going to live with you forever,” she used to say earnestly. Oh boy, I would think. This child is never going to grow up, never going to separate from me. And now she is getting ready to leave, ready to send in her early decision application, and not in New York City, where we call home.
I know this is all part of parenting, but I am still feeling extremely meloncholy about the whole thing. My eyes are tearing a bit as I type. She may be ready to leave the nest, but am I ready to let her go? I have eleven months to prepare myself. I have a fabulous new husband (two days away) by my side. And, I still have my son for another two years!
It is incredible how quickly time passes. From the crib to college in the blink of an eye.