The Summer of Change

This year my daughter graduated from high school. She was very excited to be finished, looking forward to more independence and being “an adult.” As the summer went by, she realized by finishing high school, it was moving her closer to college, to becoming responsible for herself and learning to be on her own.

One day when I got home from work, I walked in her room to find that her and her friend had built a fort. You know the kind that your little kids would build with chairs and blankets.  She had created a sanctuary in her room with blankets, pillows, snacks and her TV. For the next two weeks, friends came and went, hanging out in the fort, watching TV, playing cards and games, talking about the past and worrying about the future.

I asked her why she built her fort and she said with tears in her eyes that she wasn’t ready to adult. That she wished things would not change. She knew that once the summer was over and her friends went their separate ways, it would never be the same. The fort symbolized her childhood and the carefree times before responsibility, like college, that was fast approaching.

This made me ponder about how we have multiple stages or seasons in life. That she had finished one and was moving to the next. I began to worry if had I done enough. Had I taught her what she needed to know to be successful in life? Would she survive and thrive in college while practicing “adulting”? I also wondered how I would feel coming home, passing her room without her in it? Would the dynamics change in our house with her gone? Not only was she experiencing the summer of change, our whole family was.

As we get ready to take her to college, I assure myself that we have done our best to prepare her to take off and spread her wings. I even asked her if there was anything else she needed to know before she left.

Dropping her off will be tough to do, I am prepared with my box of tissues for the four-hour drive home. Maybe when I get home, I will build myself a fort for the weekend. Spend a few days in it, adjust to my new role of trusted advisor and mentor verses just being her mom. We will need to work on our new family dynamics, creating a harmony within our house and new opportunities to connect. I will miss my girl terribly. I am also excited to see what a wonderful woman she will become.

Life is like a river with bends and twists and change is inevitable. We have the choice to view change as a positive or a negative. I say to embrace change and grow with it. You will become a better you!

“The only way that we can live, is if we grow. The only way that we can grow is if we change. The only way that we can change is if we learn. The only way we can learn is if we are exposed. And the only way that we can become exposed is if we throw ourselves out into the open. Do it. Throw yourself.”

― C. JoyBell C.

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