My youngest child finished college and a week ago he packed his car to leave for Boston and his new job. For 10 days before he left I made glorious brunches and relished our last extended time together. We shared 22 years of wonder and hard work.
As he checked his room one last time I could feel his happiness pulse. Instead of giant sobs, I wore Mardi Gras necklaces, blew New Year's noisemakers and toasted him with cacophony. My prize was a grin as wide as his face.
Today two baby birds nest on my front porch. One of their siblings flapped its wings and ended up on the grass yesterday. I see their struggles as they fly the nest and I watch their momma's gentle nudges to get them to go. As I see them change, I find peace in the acceptance that my son and I will too.
I love change but this one makes me feel as if I were riding a roller coaster...the highest tallest coaster. I could curl up and howl, but crying makes wrinkles. Instead I will celebrate this intense freedom after 30 years of parenting.
My mini words of wisdom are to pay attention to changes, try not to fight and embrace.