I guess I forgot.
In all the planning and the lists and the shopping, I didn't stop to think that my 6-foot, 4-inch son might be scared about this new adventure he's leaving on.
Last night he came home from work and walked into my darkened bedroom to kiss me goodnight, as he does every night since he started staying out later than I stayed up. This time though, he stretched out beside me and told me how sad he felt about leaving everyone behind -- his friends, his job, his co-workers.
"Everything's going to change," he said.
And I couldn't deny it. Life is going to change for him and all of his high school buddies. They might be together again, but it won't be the same.
A lot of his friends opted to go to Ohio University. They'll all be there together, moving their high school clique to a bigger venue. He's going 16-hours away by car, only two hours by plane, to Florida.
And as he submitted his summer essay, took the alcohol training, and ordered books for classes, it all seemed like so much planning. Then as he hung out with his best friends on Sunday and said goodbye to people at work on Monday, the reality began to sink in.
He felt sad all day Monday, he said, while he sat fishing with his dad and brother.
We talked for awhile, lying in the dark bedroom. We talked about the regrets he had from high school and some goals he had for college. I urged him not to focus on the regrets.
"The mistakes are part of what make us who we are. You don't want to erase all of the mistakes because you learn from them," I told him.
"I'm going to miss you," he said. "Who will I talk to if you're not around?"
And it's true, I'm the one he turns to when something really deep is bothering him.
"You can still talk to me," I promised, "but you'll make friends and maybe find someone you can confide in."
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