Thursday, August 27, 2015

At the End of August

It's been a whirlwind month, with everything leading up to this moment:

Ten days ago, we dropped our daughter off at college.

We spent nearly 18 years preparing for this day. And we spent the whole summer preparing for this day. But you can never really be prepared for this day.

Laurel's dorm room, before and after.

Look at her. She's so happy, and I'm so happy for her.

I did fine when we left. It helps a lot that she is there with her best friend, and that her best friend's mom is one of my best friends, and that we are in this together.

I didn't even sob all the way home, like I did when we dropped off our firstborn. When we got home,  I put photos of our day on Facebook, and Randy and I watched our nightly episode of Friends. And then I went to bed and sobbed.

I woke up and pretty much sobbed on and off all day. Her room was empty. Her place at the table was empty. My little girl, my friend, my companion. My heart was empty. I was a complete basket case. Randy brought me flowers and wine and chocolates, because he is that man. I love him.

And then, the next morning, I was better. The next day was easier, and so on. We've moved easily into our new version of life. There are three of us here now, occasionally four when Jesse comes for dinner or to do his laundry. Three places at the table is quieter. The house seems bigger, and the van seems huge.

But everything is exactly right. She's where she should be, happy and, by all accounts and pictures, having a great time. She loves her classes, loves her suitemates, loves Nashville.

We've started back to school, and Duncan and I have quickly settled into a productive and enjoyable schedule. Co-op classes have started back, and by the second week, I didn't even miss seeing all my favorite seniors (who are now college freshmen) around. Much.

Duncan's first day of sophomore year

Bess and Laurel: first day of high school and first day of college

But this weekend? She turns 18 and we get to go see her. I can't wait!