Friday, August 13, 2010

Long, Lingering Hugs and Torrents of Tears

A steady stream of well-wishers has filtered through the family home on this, the last day before our daughter leaves for college. There have been tearful farewells with friends, as well as a nice dinner with the grandparents. At the end of the evening, a smile could not hide the puffy eyes.

Her brother has set a personal record for hanging around the house, saying repeatedly, “this is just so weird. I can’t really grasp that she’s leaving.”
Well, get a grip, because she is.

I’ve been saying for more than a year that this would be terrible for me, and that has turned out to be accurate. I’m convinced that I’m better than I might have been if I had not spread the misery out over all this time. My wife, a “live in the moment” kind of person, is just plain weepy. My sweet mother-in-law left the house in tears.
The college girl is ready to go. She was awake until 2:00 a.m. talking on webcams with some of her buddies who have already moved to campus. It’s the process of saying good-bye that has taken its toll.

There was a long lunch earlier in the day with a group of girls, some lingering hugs and rivers of tears.
The Girl Across the Street, who is the closest thing our daughter has to a sister, has been hanging around, squeezing a few more moments of togetherness into the final few hours.

Sure, she’ll be home for holidays and summers, but it’s a safe bet that after tonight, things around here will never again be quite the same.

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