MOM TO MOM
Wow…back to school resonates quite differently for me this year. Last year, I was shuffling my triplets off to their first year of college, so it was a time of great anticipation and angst. I worried so much about them. Would they like their colleges? Would they make friends? What would their roommates be like? So many questions were on my mind, but the simple truth was that I had zero control over any of it. Moreover, this wasn’t about me. They were going out on their own and they’d figure everything out.
I also anticipated the empty nest syndrome, but I caught a bit of a break in that my brother and his wife stayed with us for a while as they were transitioning to a new home. I happily did not come home to an empty house every day.
What I hadn’t thought about at all was the way I would be instantly out of the loop on what was happening in town. I didn’t have younger kids who were still in the school system, so I was immediately removed from the seemingly endless email chains that came from administrators, teachers, parents’ organizations and coaches. No communication. Nothing. Nada. Zip. And that’s both good and bad. Sure, it was a relief not to complete all of the compulsory paperwork that accompanies any new school year. That was my job when the girls were in the public schools. Now that they are legal adults and in college, the responsibility falls on their shoulders. But, it also meant that I was cut off from the information stream. I would see some things posted in social media, but there was a disconnect. Parents and friends I would see at practices, games, concerts and other school-related activities seemed to evaporate. It’s just the way things are. As the kids move on, so do the parents. Now, my husband and I are making a concerted effort to rekindle some friendships that may have languished over the school years. We have more time to get reacquainted with old friends who fell off of our radar. It’s a whole lot of fun to get to know childhood and college buddies again. So this year, it is one of confidence for the girls and for us. I know I’ll get some pangs when they’re back at college, but I will also have some new adventures of my own. And, one thing is for sure – they can manage just fine without me! They will be returning sophomores who know the lay of the land. When the last one trots off just after Labor Day, I will take a deep breath and embrace what lies ahead. Hmm. Maybe I’ll enroll in a class myself. I always wanted to learn to speak Italian.