So much has happened since my last post. I believe I left off the night before taking our youngest daughter to college. The process was much the same as it was with her older sisters, but the emotional impact was definitely different. As we drove away from her dorm I found it difficult to breath. I was leaving my baby behind. Not only was I driving away from my youngest child, I was also leaving a part of myself along the way. My days of”mom” as I knew it, were over. Early morning wake-ups for school, quick runs to Starbucks before class, after school activities, family dinners, and just being able to see my daughter every day. How would I survive not seeing her in the morning or before bed to know that she was healthy and happy? To say that I was apprehensive about this new stage might be an understatement. Anyone who knows me at all knows that change is not something I embrace. Fast forward to Spring of my daughter’s freshman year of college. Believe it or not, this transition has gone smoother than I expected.
One of the first decisions I made about my “new life” was to be more present and rediscover interests that I put on the back burner while raising my family. As moms, I think that we place most of our attention on our children and families. I don’t think that this is a bad thing at all. When my husband and I decided to raise our family, we made this commitment. Several years ago I played tennis and enjoyed the heck out of it. I haven’t played in about 8 years. In January I signed up for a class. Although I knew no one in the class, I soon found a sense of comfort in this group of strangers. Men and women; young and old. One friend in the group invited me to join a boot camp class at a fitness studio in my town. Honestly, I was not excited about trying this class, but in retrospect it is one of the best choices I have made for myself in a really long time. I’m feeling healthy and alive. It’s really okay to focus on my own needs and wants.
Mid April 2017, about a month until my daughter returns home for the summer. I feel that I am in a good place. I know that she has grown while living on her own these past months and this makes me happy and proud. I hope that she sees that her mom has grown too. I am stronger than I gave myself credit for. Yes, I do still miss the life that was but I know there will always be moments that bring us back and we will remember. Changes are a natural part of life. Watching your children grow into responsible, young people might make those changes a little easier. Give them wings to fly and watch while they soar.