Empty Nest

Earlier this month my husband and I dropped my oldest son off at college. He had gotten into his top choice school, all his hard work in high school had paid off—the essays, studying, SATS, etc.  I know he is going to be very happy…but I am feeling the opposite.

I am filled with questions and worries. Will I still be a part of my son’s life? Did I prepare him enough to make wise, safe choices? Is he taking care of himself? Eating healthy? Drinking too much alcohol? Is he happy, lonely, does he miss us?

Me and Alex

Yesterday, a friend of mine asked for my son’s cell number and told me she was driving to bring her son (a year younger than mine) to interview at his college. I gave it to her but thought to myself—my son barely has time for me. Is he really going to have time for my friend and her son? I hoped he’d at least talk to them and acknowledge their presence at his school.

It turns out, he did. To my relief, my friend reported that he looked great and he had rearranged his afternoon so he could give them a tour of the school. (This surprised me because it took him several weeks to figure out how to get around campus!) He showed off his dorm room, and introduced his roommates and friends. My friend noted that they all seemed like great kids and especially how at home, proud and HAPPY my son seemed.

Knowing that he is truly happy is a great feeling. I am realizing college isn’t about losing our son—college is about my son growing up and continuing with his intellectual and personal growth. I am learning to let go and will focus on building a new type of relationship with him. I still CAN’T WAIT for parent’s weekend in two weeks though!!


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