As I watched her car back out of the driveway, I felt the old familiar pain of feeling goodbye. Saying the words are one thing, but experiencing the pure devastation of the reality that she is gone is on a level that is indescribable except to the heart. I had no thought of ever losing her. I was so naive to believe when they placed her in my arms that she was really mine. Her wings are beautiful and her excitement to fly far exceeds my struggle to let her go. The house feels so empty without her but I’ll have this beautiful space where she remains here inside my heart. I survived her first semester and I look forward to hearing about all the adventures and new experiences waiting for her this semester. Until we meet again, enjoy this ride. It is your journey and I pray you take in every moment. Don’t ever forget where you come from but never lose that excitement about where you are going. You are only confined by the limits of your mind. Think big sweet girl and continue to fly.
Tomorrow is the day I leave my heart four hours away. Only I could understand the emptiness that closet must have felt as we loaded her clothes into the car. My whole world packed into two trunks ready to drive her off to start a new life someplace else. It’s bitter sweet I guess. There is a part of me excited for the change about to come into her life but the mom in me, the part that kept her safe and protected for 18 years is breaking apart at the seams. My life as I have known it is disappearing in front of my eyes and I can almost hear my heart tearing apart.
Love them and let them go.
It sounds easy in theory but when you watch a room that was so full of her empty out, your heart can’t help but feel that emptiness too. Tomorrow I will leave her behind. Tomorrow I quietly wink at God and remind him she is in His hands now. I will pray that I did enough and loved her enough and that she is ready to step behind the wheel. Her life is her own now. Will she make the right choices? Will she be kind and compassionate? Will she be happy? Grateful? I can only hope when I feel sad that I will remember her like I see her today…excited, full of life, her face sprouting a gigantic smile as she holds her new Bluetooth water bottle in her hand and dances around. She is my baby going off to college, that same little girl with light and adventure bursting from her eyes, ready to explore the next thing in her path. This time though I have to have the strength and courage to let her do it alone. She will always know where to find me and I will sit quietly waiting for her to return.
I remember the day like it was yesterday. The memories came flooding back tonight as I watched the scene between a man and his dying granddaughter.
Sometimes you just know that when you turn and walk out of someone’s door it will be the last time you will ever see them again. I remember taking my grandmothers hand and studying her face. I thought that maybe if I looked at her long enough, I would remember every detail. I begged her to open her eyes so I could see them one more time but she just didn’t have the strength. I felt the bones crushing in my chest as I turned to walk out of her room that day. I felt like I couldn’t breathe. The heart knows what the heart knows and mine was giving me a heads up on the pain that was about to come.
We are so quick to pick and choose who we allow in and who we throw out of our lives. We treat people like beanbags who we throw around at our convenience forgetting that our words and our actions scar the people who have loved us at our best and have always been there to help us through our worst. We forget that a lifetime is not forever. Sometimes we say goodbye by choice and other times there is no other choice.
Death knocks loudly on everyone’s door. It is a knock we cannot ignore. Be careful, for the door you slam in someone’s face to keep them away may be the very door you stand in while you watch them being carried away. You will stand there alone and seek comfort in your pride. I wonder how that will feel, knowing you said goodbye long before you ever had to.