OMG! When did this happen? Bec is now a High School senior! A friend of ours in Florida recently commented on her kids going back to school and next year having two children in college. This morning, I find myself in the same shoes and it is a weird feeling. My usual morning starts at 5:30, and over the past few years I would wake up Bec at 6:30. Due to working on a project with a team in Hong Kong and Australia late at night, my wake up time has shifted. Last night, I did ask if she wanted me to wake her up, to which she answered no. At 6:20, I was staring at the ceiling wondering if Bec’s alarm would go off. I was going to be strong – she is a senior! In my mind, I had my old alarm clock next to me, the kind before there were digital displays and the numbers were more like the tabs on a rolodex…for every minute that passed, you would hear the click of the number being release to update the time. I laid there waiting for that sound, which, of course, never came.
6:25…My mind started to wander back through time, about 34 years ago, to my senior year in High School. Time and distance meant that I remembered only bits and pieces. At 19, I was old enough to go into a liquor store and buy beer, except I really did not start drinking until college. We used to go out every weekend to parties or just to hang out. It was an exciting year as we all had a taste of some form of freedom and really began to take the college selection seriously. I know we had classes, but do not really remember that part at all…
6:28…Oh, great, that killed time…Three days ago, we were all up early as it was time to take Gab back to college. The summer was definitely over when it is time to head out to school. We picked up bagels for the car ride and off the four of us went. Two hours later, we were at her school waiting for our turn to move in. It was over 90 degrees and Gab and her roommates were moving into an on-campus suite with no air conditioning. We all smiled and joked through the dripping sweat, setting up fans to cool the room down, loft the bed and setup her room. It was nice that after moving in, all four of the families went out together for lunch. Afterwards, we did some shopping, and then left her for the night. That was one child ready for school.
6:31…I better get out of bed and check on Bec. I knock on her door and open it. Her head pops up off the pillow, and I casually say “It’s 6:30.” “OK” was the response. 2 minutes later I go back to make sure she is out of bed, which she is. I go back to bed. Why am I anxious? At a little after 7:00, I head downstairs to the kitchen, where I started to type these thoughts; I do not really want Bec to think I got up just to see her off. At 7:20, Bec says good-bye and I wish her a great day. Today is her first day of school. Today is her first day of her senior year. Today is her first day of new classes. For Bec, today is a first day. Then it hits me…today is the last day, after 15 years, that I will see a child off on their first day of school.