Well, friend! It happened. We dropped our oldest child Ethan off at college this past week.
I thought we’d plow right through the momentous occasion with a day full of celebration, high fives and motivational moments to get him launched into his new chapter. 🏆
But here’s what really happened.
I was at a loss for words as our home stirred awake Ethan’s last morning at home uttering to myself, “Be strong Carrie.” Before the scheduled move in time, we took him to a funky local breakfast in his new city. The whole time I couldn’t help but marvel of the young man he’s become and excited for the adventure that awaits him yet at the same time I wanted to hold on to him just a little bit longer.
Eventually we made our way to the dorm followed by unloading, unpacking and a quick dash to a local box store for a few last minute items. “Keep it together, Carrie. Keep it together Carrie,” I whispered to myself.
There was clear moment when Ricardo and I knew it was time to transition from our role as guardians of a teenage boy to parents of an independent young man.
We laid hands on Ethan to bless him and pray over him before our final goodbye and I literally could not speak for a few moments until I quivered out a short prayer. And then it happened. We closed the door to Room 213, only our boy stayed behind to begin his new life. The tears began to flow and I allowed myself to feel the emotions of the moment. It was the longest walk to the car EVER!
Honestly, I cried the whole way home. I cried when we walked in the house and I could smell his Axe. I cried when I walked into his empty bedroom the first time (and the 10th time). I cried as I vacuumed his floor and right before bedtime feeling the absence of the one who flew the nest.
The following day I spontaneously burst into tears at the coffee shop and even now as I type this. I went through the drive-thru at Taco Bell and ordered his favorite thing and allowed my heart to miss him with every bite.
I am sure I’ll get back to the high fives and motivational talk soon but for now, this mama is extending compassion toward herself knowing this is BIG, GOOD, HARD and EXCITING all wrapped into one. I’m letting myself to live in the present moment to process, grow, praise God and yes, to be sad too.
Whether your kid is going off to college, the military, trade school or to join the workforce this year or you’re just in a season of hard, let me reminder you that your tears don’t make you weak, they mean there are things in your life that matter to you. The best news of all, sis, is that God is faithful and cares for you!!!
“…the LORD, the LORD God, compassionate and gracious, slow to anger, and abounding in lovingkindness and truth;” Exodus 34:6