Wow – It’s hard to believe that a year ago I was letting go of B for the first time. When I say “letting go”, I’m referring to the separation that takes place when your child begins their college journey. I soon discovered that the “letting go” isn’t just a one time deal. It happens over and over again – each time you reunite with your child, and then separate again. I can’t say the “letting go” gets any less painful, but with time, I’ve learned to accept it.
This was last year’s post as I was about to “let go” for the first time. Hoping it might bring some sense of peace to those moms and dads “letting go” of their college freshman for the first time….
Given that writing is my way of analyzing, processing and understanding life, it’s kind of a no-brainer that I would have the notion to write a letter to Ben before he heads off to college. When I first sat down to attempt this overwhelming task back in June, I realized there was no way I could say everything that needed to be said in a typical letter. Instead, what was created, was more like a journal – sharing my thoughts, experiences, worries and wonders as this summer unfolded.
The following is an excerpt from a recent entry:
As I sit here less than 2 weeks from taking you to Colorado, I really struggle with what to say. What’s left to say? What could I possibly say NOW, that would make a difference. The mommy side of me wants to run through a checklist of life lessons, things to remember to do or say in certain situations. But I chuckle even as I write that.
There’s NOTHING left to say! Much like it’s pointless to study for the SAT test the night before you take it. You are either ready for it or you aren’t.
YOU ARE READY! You have been ready for this for quite some time now. I know you are ready, in my head and in my heart. I know you will grab onto the opportunities that lie ahead of you – and take full advantage of them. I know you will make countless great choices, and probably a few bad ones – because that’s life and that’s how we learn and grow!
So while there’s nothing left to say to prepare you for this major life change, there ARE a few things you’ve heard before, that are worth repeating!
- I am proud of you! It’s easy to be proud of your academic and athletic accomplishments. But I’m way more proud of your character, your attitude, and your choices…..I am beyond proud of the man you are becoming!
- I am grateful I get to be your mom! There are hundreds of reasons why I’m grateful to be your mom. But at the core of it all – you have allowed me to parent you, to practice on you and make mistakes, to guide and direct you, to catch you when you fall down and to gently nudge you off the ledge when you were too timid to take the leap of faith. You have laughed with me, cried with me, sat in silence with me. You have taught me as much about life as I hope I have taught you. You have loved me, with the adoration of a child and now with the compassion and respect of a growing young man.
- I believe in you! You can (and will) do whatever you set your mind to. You have already demonstrated you have the desire and discipline to succeed in life. You have set and accomplished one goal after another. You don’t quit when things get hard. You have a clear understanding of right and wrong. In the midst of that laser focus, you are kind, compassionate, considerate and respectful of other people. Who you are, makes it easy to believe in you!
- I love you! I love you, I love you, I love you!!!!!!!!!! This is one thing you should never, ever question! I hope through your first 18 years you have embedded in your heart and soul the truth that you are both lovable and worthy of being loved.
Now go fly Ben!