New Chapters

My oldest son started college a week ago. This picture was taken the day he moved into his dorm. I love it. I have another picture like it of my younger son starting his new high school. He’s walking away too. :  ) I’m not smiling because they are walking away, I’m smiling because the photos are so appropriate for this time in their lives. It’s the best time ever, for all of us. Not that they are growing up and moving away from me. But that they are growing up and moving toward their own lives, lives #1 son is ecstatic about and #2 is just beginning to picture. How exciting for us all this is.

Seriously, seven years ago I didn’t know how I was going to pull this off . Now it’s here and it’s all so good. Max is so excited about his classes and his future. He’s so happy being in the dorm, being at a university, challenging his brain. I just love how much he loves it. He’s living his dream and I couldn’t be happier for him.

Logan  started a new high school this year. The one he was at was way too big for him. It wasn’t a good fit. He’s in a smaller school that he seems to be really enjoying. It’s like it was tailor made for him. I’m so happy he’s in a place where he can thrive, finally. He’s talking about college and a career for the first time ever, and that makes me really happy too.

The year leading up to this has had it’s really emotional moments. I would cry just thinking about my son moving away. A friend sent me a book called, “The Gift of an Ordinary Day” written by a woman with two sons going through what mine are right now. She began the book writing about them as children of 6 and 9 and I cried. I cried every time I picked the book up. She wrote about them starting new schools as she and her husband were uprooting their own lives. It was such a perfect book for me. It got to the point that my boys would see me crying and say, “Are you reading that book again?” Yep….. I spent about a month reading it and weeping. It got it out of my system, for the most part.

After I cried my eyes out for a month, I began to see the excitement in this time. Not only is my son starting a new chapter away at college. We all are. As I drove away from his dorm on that first day, I felt as if I was beginning something new myself. I am. I am so excited to experience these next years.

There is a sadness in closing a really wonderful chapter in a book as well as life. In all things really. But, it is so exciting to begin a new one. It’s not about loss, it’s about new beginnings. I cannot wait.

Max used to have his friends over all the time. I woke up on the weekends with boys sleeping all over. I loved it. I fed them. They were happy. I was happy. It was great fun having the house that the kids loved to be at. I hated to think about those days ending. But, the feel of the house is different now, but it’s good. I love peace. It has a peaceful feel to it. It’s not like my son was noisy, he isn’t. But, I can still feel the difference. And, it’s not bad. It’s different. It’s not a complete break yet, more like a transition. Just yesterday I got out of the shower and two of Max’s friends had let themselves in to pick up some games to take to his dorm. So, the friends aren’t gone yet. My son isn’t all that far away…

I’m thinking this is Logan’s time now. If you look closely, he’s walking between those two cars. I have a few years with just him home with me, and I want them to count. I want these to be really good ones for him. I can’t wait to see how it shapes itself. What will these years look like? I can’t wait to see.

For the last several years I’ve been conscious that their time at home with me was winding down. The teen years have been some of my favorite. After the age of twelve or so, I so enjoyed watching how their brains matured and they started “becoming”. I’ve savored these years knowing that at the end, they would be moving on. Still my sons, but the nature of our relationship would change when they began living their own lives. They wouldn’t be under my roof, need rides or rely on me for daily maintenance.

But, as I see how they are now and the type of people they are, I know they will be okay. We all will be. Sometimes when a chapter is closing we think all the good times are in the past, but very often, the ones to come are every bit as satisfying, good and wonderful. I cannot wait to see how this unfolds.

(Max is coming home for Sunday dinner…..yay!)

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