Sunday, August 27, 2017

On the Rox- Goodbye Caterpillar Hello Butterfly

Friday I dropped my baby girl off at college...and had to walk away from her, leaving her alone six hours away from home.

I took it harder than she did, which is often the way it goes. She's excited to grow up, be on her own, attend college, make new friends, etc.

Me, I'm mourning the loss of my "baby".

I know some people don't understand why parents, especially moms, get so emotional over a child going off to college. 

It means you did your job, they are smart independent adults ready to move on.

Moms on the other hand, are not so ready to move on. 

Why?

Because we just spent 18 or more years catering to that child's needs. We were so busy changing diapers, working, taking kids to doctors appointments, little league, music class, art class, planning birthday parties, etc...that the time flew by. 

It's so hard to appreciate the moments because we're so BUSY living them. Struggling with them, trying to make the dollars last, the hours stretch and keep our energy levels high enough so we can just make it through the day.

We may have glimpses, simple moments where we can appreciate the precious gifts we have, then we blink and the moment is gone.

One minute we're dropping our babies off for Kindergarten the next we wake up and it's the day we take them to college and we realize our baby is gone. Sure in one way she's the same person, standing in front of you, a beautiful young woman ready to conquer the world. 

But she is what your baby has become, she's not your "baby" anymore. 

She's the butterfly that came out of the cocoon- yet it was the fuzzy little caterpillar you cuddled with, the caterpillar that ran around the house in footed p.j's looking so adorable. A fuzzy little caterpillar that needed you. That you took care of. That was your little shadow and mini me for 18 years. You hate to say goodbye to that sweet caterpillar but she's gone forever.

Now the beautiful butterfly spreads her wings and flies away, ready to show the world what she can do...without you.

So even though my girl is still my girl. I mourn what was and will never be again. I mourn the end of an era, the loss of little ones running around the house and what that means for me. 

A forty something woman whose kids are all grown and almost grown up (my youngest is 11 so I have 7 more years before doing this again). I look back on my life- on all the moments lost, all the things gained, all the memories made, and pray that even though I am aging and my kids are growing up, that the best is still to come and that the good things are not all behind me.

And I hope I will stop crying soon so I can appreciate the beautiful butterfly my daughter has become.




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