Our son leaves tomorrow, off to Georgia Tech to start his freshman year of college. I’m having a much harder time with this than I imagined I would. There were many times when I thought this moment would never arrive. Now it has and I realize just how much I’m going to miss him.
What a bittersweet moment. I am happy, proud, and excited. This is a wonderful time in Alex’s life. I remember what a fantastic experience going off to college was for me. But I am also feeling an overwhelming amount of sadness.
A few weeks ago our daughter looked at our dog and said, “Wow, he has no idea what’s about to happen. We are all preparing ourselves for Alex being gone and the poor dog has no idea.” She’s right, but then I don’t think there is any way to prepare myself to walk past Alex’s empty room or face his empty chair at the dinner table. It’s going to be so hard!
And yet this is what we have been preparing him for since he was born. I’m not worried about Alex being on his own. We have done our job; we’ve given him roots and wings. I know he is ready. I’m the one who isn’t ready. Who was supposed to prepare me?
Change is hard. But fighting it makes it even harder. Suffering comes from not accepting change. How we respond to change makes all the difference. Change can be good. It can bring about new opportunities. It will be hard at first, but it will get easier.
One of the best strategies for dealing with change is to seek out social support. My sweet husband knows how hard tomorrow is going to be for us both. He has planned a day full of fun activities to keep us occupied. My friends have promised to take me out for a glass of wine when I call.
Alex, I am so very happy for you! This is your moment! I know you are going to shine! And don’t worry about me, I will be just fine.