Wednesday, 20 August 2008

Just when she was getting interesting...

My oldest is about to start college. The next ten days will be a flurry of shopping, packing and assurances that everything will be okay.

She's studying for her BA in Arts and Animation at one of the top schools in Canada, Sheridan College. Someday you'll see her work at Pixar! We managed to find her a nice place just across the street from the school, and if she wants to come home for the weekend, she's only a couple of hours away by train or bus, and we can always make the 1.5 hour drive to get her. After all, she'll want a decent meal at least once every couple of weeks.

I have mixed feelings about my oldest youngling leaving the nest. Like any parent, I've been frustrated, infuriated, enraged and worried. She bickers. She swears, calling her brother every name in the book. She won't eat a meal with food touching each other. Shes keep me up at night, yapping in the hallway, slamming her door and complaining she's cold. She doesn't clean the cat's litter box without being hounded for three days.

She says things in a quirky way that doesn't fail to make me laugh. She introduces me to movies and authors I never would have discovered if not for her appreciation of the really funny stuff. She got me hooked on 30 Rock, Arrested Development and The Office. She walks the dog.

I'm a lucky Mom. Many of my peers have complained about teenagers who stay out late, are lazy, unappreciative and belligerent. Some kids smoke, drink and do drugs, either in the open or on the sly. They get into fights, talk back to their parents, and barely scrape by in school. They treat their home like a hotel, expecting their laundry to suddenly appear, all washed and folded in their drawers. Not my kids.

The biggest disagreement I have with my son is his stubborn habit of composing his school essays in Lucida Grande instead of Times New Roman. (I know... first it'll be fonts, then it will lead to cocaine OMG!)

The thing that worries me most about my daughter is that she worries too much. That being said, I have nothing to worry about, except to stop her from worrying.

Will I feel that tug and snap of the apron strings when we finally say goodbye? Will I sit in her room for all of Labour Day, crying into her stuffed toys?

More likely, I'll be turning her bedroom into my writing room. Or not. She'll probably be back for a visit within a couple of weeks, already tired of living on peanut butter sandwiches.

That's okay. I'll welcome her back with open arms, then shove her out the door again.

Illustration: Dog Spacedog in Space - used with permission from my daughter, the creator.

14 comments:

bunnygirl said...

Cute pic-- your daughter has talent.

Transitions are tough, but your daughter will come back to you a little less your baby and more your dear friend.

Seems like just yesterday we were all off to college or our own apartment for the first time. Funny how the time passes.

Stephen Parrish said...

I'm on your heels. I'm not at all looking forward to an empty nest. It's been wonderful being a daddy and I wish it could go on forever.

Travis Erwin said...

Congrats to you on leading her to to be such a position to go out and chase her dreams.

BernardL said...

'The biggest disagreement I have with my son is his stubborn habit of composing his school essays in Lucida Grande instead of Times New Roman. (I know... first it'll be fonts, then it will lead to cocaine OMG!)'

LOL! My daughter went away to college only an hour and a half away, and now I have a six year old grandson. She did get her degree too though. :)

Chumplet said...

Holy crap, Bernard! Don't scare me like that!

BernardL said...

My grandson lost his first tooth the weekend before last while visiting us. We played baseball and basketball together. He started first grade this week. Life happens... sometimes just not how we planned. :)

Bernita said...

" but your daughter will come back to you a little less your baby and more your dear friend."
Wise words from Bunny.
It's the Next Adventure.
Funny, but my husband had more problems untying the apron strings than I.

Candy said...

Yep, it's a bittersweet transition isn't it? Mine is a college senior this year, but still comes home sometimes for dinner!

Candy

Amy Mullis said...

I know; just when they're over the teenage grumps and you can stand them again--even perhaps like them--they head off to college. My youngest is at Community College this year. I miss the child that he was, but I'm loving the young man he's become!

writtenwyrdd said...

Sweet! But if she cannot have her food touching on her plate...she's going to have a problem with college cafeteria eating!

I wouldn't change the room to your office just yet. Maybe box up her stuff, though. And paint. And change the duvet... ;)

Chumplet said...

I'm putting my own pictures on the wall, though!

We're still trying to peel off her baby wallpaper. It's half off and the room looks like something out of a bad science fiction movie.

Kanani said...

Sounds like you've done a good job!

writtenwyrdd said...

Oh Gack! I had to strip wallpaper from my entire house and I never, ever want to do that again!

laughingwolf said...

grats on getting into sheridan, #1 child... if the illo's any indication, other than being accepted, you are on your way to great things!

way to go, mama!