Friday, October 19, 2007

Big Girls Do Cry

It's 12:20 at night and I just got done talking to my son, Jake. He had a lot of questions about what to do on a long drive. I gave him my best advice and a good map. I hugged him from behind as he turned to leave and he told me he'd see me in the morning.

He's moving away tomorrow. He's 19 and has decided it's time to get on with his life. He'll be sharing a house with a couple of friends from high school. In Virginia! That's about 1200 miles from here.

It's all quite sudden. He says he's been thinking about it for months now and he did mention it to me as a distant possibility once or twice. But suddenly it was all a "go". Today he told me he's leaving in the morning. He said he hoped he could leave on good terms.

Jake's dad took it much better than I expected. No big lectures, no screaming tirade. Instead, he asked Jake a few questions about his plans and told him he could always come back if it didn't work out.

And so I've spent the day crying. Maybe tomorrow I can be more eloquent, but right now I can't find the words. All I've got today are pictures in my head of all the days and nights I spent with this child and one thought: it's over, it's over, it's over. He's packed. He's ready. Am I?

11 comments:

tif said...

Oh Caryl, I wish I could reach through the computer screen and give you a huge hug! :(

I can only imagine how you feel. I have a 16 year old who tells me everyday she wants to move out. I know the day will come for her to wonder out on her own and it scares me to death.

I'm sure you have raised him to be a wonderful young man. He will be fine and he knows he has a family that will be with him in think and thin..
If you need to talk, give me a call. 765-883-8988. I'm here with open ears! :)

caryl said...

Thanks, tif. That really means alot.

Bluesgirl said...

Caryl, I'm sending you a big giant HUG!!! My children are both very young but I often think what the "leaving" day will be like when it arrives. As Tif mentioned in the earlier post, I'm sure he will be fine. You should feel proud that he has such confidence to venture out on his own!! That confidence is a gift that you helped instill in him. You should feel proud!!! I'm sure you have done a wonderful job raising him. I realize that this is a loss but also try to see it as a time of growth for both of you. I'll be thinking of you!!

caryl said...

tif and blues, you both made me cry. You're both very sweet. Thanks.

Blues, I never looked at it that way, but you're right, it takes a lot of confidence to do what he's doing. And everything he did in preparation seemed really mature.

Today I'm waiting to hear that he arrived safely.

Peg Hannon said...

We were much younger when we ventured off to Geneseo and thought we knew all we needed to know. Wether a child is 19, 21 or 25, they will find their way and it will be easier to make their way with a couple of good friends behind them. Greg was kind in telling him he could come back, I remember my dad telling me right after college "be sure this is what you want because there is no revolving door in this house", I moved out at 22 and never looked back and never needed to. I am sure that you and Greg instilled good values and character in him and that he will be fine.

heylaw said...

Hey Caryl, both my kids are out now. My older son left once and never came back. He is living in Boston for nearly 5 years now. He is extremely happy. My younger son has been in Fort Lauderdale for nearly a year now. Yes, it was hard at first. But I can honestly say that we are closer now than we ever were. We talk more and believe it or not, I see them more than when they "lived" here. We actually have better communication and lots of fun together when we visit. And, of course, with today's modern technology, the pictures are endless!

The ache in your heart will subside....but I do understand how you feel.

heylaw said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
caryl said...

You're right, Peggy. I was only 17 when I went away to college and I realized a couple of days ago that Jake is now about as far away from my family as I was when I went to Geneseo. He'll be fine.

heylaw said...

oops - sorry, I didn't mean to post that twice!!!

caryl said...

Thanks, Lori, for the kind words. I deleted the repeated post. Hey, a rhymer!

Nora said...

Hooray for you Caryl. A child feeling confident enough to spread their own wings is a true testament to good parenting. I know it's hard (actually I wish I knew it was hard ...mine will never leave!!!) but Caryl the only way they can see if they can do it is to try. Jake will grow up much faster and he WILL learn to appreciate all you did for him. KUDOS to Greg for letting him know "That you can come home again!" Hang in there Caryl your relationship with Jake will become stronger.