Wednesday, October 12, 2011

I Just Called To Say......I Love You

so the song goes....

Most of the conversations I have had over the past few years with my oldest college teenager have not exactly been about the latest news, politics, or weather. In fact most conversations have a lot to do with what he needs, when he needs it, and how much it is going to cost me. If you can relate to this you must have a teenager in the house or remember life when you were one.

The past few years of my life with him have been me trying to figure out how to engage him in REAL conversation about life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. But nothing ever seemed to work. It was frustrating at times and at times I would try to remember what a good friend said to me once: "Your teenagers mentally will leave you and sometimes for several years and then one day they return and you will wonder where they have been". I laugh saying that because I have been living it and it is so true. They do mentally check out and then one day they seem to check back in.

Such was my experience today. The ever-growing college boy who is in the "checked out" stage called me on the phone. Here is how our conversation went:

Me: Hey guy, how are you?
Him: Hey Mom, how's it going?
Me: Great here except I miss you.
Him: I miss you too.
Me: What ya been up to?
Him: Not much. School's good.
Me: Ok. Whatchya calling for?
::pause waiting for the "I need (fill in the blank)" request::
Him: No reason... just to see how you are doing. I love you mom.
Me: I love you too.

and then we went on to talk about life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. And it felt really great.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

What To Expect When...

In 1993 when my first son was born I received a gift from a friend who was a new mom herself. It was a book called "What To Expect When You Are Expecting". If you are a mom surely you know this book. The series continues with "What To Expect In the First Year" and then "What To Expect The Toddler Years". So imagine my surprise when I looked for "What To Expect When Your Child Goes To College". Guess what? The book doesn't exist.

I sure could have used a book this last August when I dropped my newborn baby from 1993 off to college. I don't think I expected anything except for one thing....lots and lots of tears.

It's funny. During the drive back home after leaving him I thought a lot back to when my parents dropped me off at college. I was so excited and happy and joyful at what lay ahead. A new chapter in my life. I couldn't understand when my Dad divulged to me that my Mom cried the entire drive home. It seemed odd to me. After all, I was very happy so why was she so sad. I think that's when it dawned on me that her sadness wasn't about me but about her. I suddenly became my Mom. That Mom. Every Mom who drops her child off at school.

My tears weren't about him. They were about me and how much I would miss him and how much I would love to still be holding him in my arms and feeding him his bottle and watching him make cute little faces with his chubby cheeks. When people ask me about him and how he is doing up at college I always tell them how much he likes it there. And then I tell them how much I miss him. And then I cry.
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