Thursday, June 23, 2016


My throat constricted every time I passed his room.  The neatly made bed. The clean floor.  The silence.  I missed my son - fiercely.  I knew he would be back - Lord willing.  But nothing was the same here without him.  I missed that bedroom floor strewn with shoes which I was forever telling him to pick up.  I missed the empty chip bag laying next to the trash can rather than in it.  I missed the cacophony of noises coming from the TV or the video game or, best of all, my son's infectious laugh as he scrolled through his social media sites or watched ridiculous videos on his phone.  I missed him asking me to take him to the mall or to get a smoothie.  I especially missed his goodnight kiss - a ritual he and I still clung to no matter that he would soon be 16.
I sobbed at the airport as I put him on a plane by himself - off on a month-long summer venture to Michigan where he would spend time at a basketball camp and then visiting various family members.  He had never been away for any length of time - and now here he was having to navigate airports alone, keeping track of his things, remembering to take his medicine... with no parent trailing him to be sure he was OK and responsible.
I'm now halfway through the month without him.  It has not gotten any easier for me.  I know he is fine and that family is with him.  I know he is having fun.  I know it is a good experience for him to be away and learning to take care of himself.  But that doesn't help my heart from longing to have him safely back with me.  It does not help my soul from needing to see him, laugh with him, hug him.
His absence has left a huge emptiness in my home this summer.  I am distracted, sad, unproductive.  It does not help that in a month I will be taking my daughter away to college and will have to experience these feelings all over again...only permanently.  I am not ready to let my children go.  I know I have to - but I am not ready.  I feel lost.  All I ever wanted to be was a mother and I have reveled in this role - I have enjoyed every moment - good and bad.  I know I am still going to be their mother.  But it will be so very different as they begin to step out on their own.  Who am I, then?  What is my purpose if they no longer need me on a daily basis?
I will miss my son's 16th birthday this year as he will be gone still.  He will miss Father's Day, his sister's 18th birthday and the Fourth of July.  Nothing is right...for me anyway.  Tears flow unexpectedly.  I attempt to fill my days with busywork.  Not much helps.  I do not like this season of life.
My throat constricts as I pass by his room - so neat, so tidy, so empty.  I miss my son.

Quote for the day:  How lucky I am to have something that makes saying goodbye so hard.
                                            ~ Winnie the Pooh