We awoke as usual and yet something seemed off and yet I couldn’t quite place what it was. I lay in bed, enjoying the morning sounds of our house as the sun rose, the deep breathing of our four-legged kiddos and the snoring of our youngest human as he had come into our room in the middle of night with his sleeping bag and made himself comfortable on the floor near the fan. Dh was struggling to shake off the sleepiness of a restful, deep sleep. Sounds that permeate life if you will. Huh, just another day…until I realized it isn’t. Wasn’t.
Today is the last day my oldest woke up in our home, until she returns in November. Where did the last 18-years and 3.5 months go!? Tomorrow we will wake up across the country, pick-up our rental car and make our way to the college she ultimately chose this past spring. The last day she woke up in the only home she’s ever known…I’ve been so busy between work, life, organizing everything required to move a young adult across the country for school let alone the additional work of finding specialists to continue her treatment program that she’s been working through these last 2.5-years that I didn’t begin to realize the day was here until, well, today.
It’s a surreal feeling, that’s for sure, one that I can’t fully articulate because I’m still in full on program manager mode but in the silent moments, when I allow myself a breathe or two, thoughts begin to flood my core of her, past, present and immediate future. Like every parent, yes I’m proud of her and hope she is as thoughtful and kind in the future as she has been up until now. We also know that the real world is the real world and how one copes, adapts and reacts is really untested until that defining moment occurs. In light of all that she’s had to work through in the last few years and continues to work through, my hope for her is that she loves with all of her heart, dreams with freedom, laughs and cries when she wants to, and finds happiness with who she is in her own skin and from there, she finds her tribe, what sustains her in whatever career choice she makes because it’s her choice, not anyone else’s.
The sheer emotions of this significant event hasn’t hit me yet. Yet being the operative word. As I know that when I wake up next week, in our home and she isn’t there, I’ll grieve, if even for a moment, that the sounds of the morning that anchored me in my house won’t ever be the same.