I could not wait to be a Mom. I was one of those people. Even as a teenager I had a pair of tiny KEDS sneakers hanging from my bulletin board. I was an elder-primgravida (I started a tad on the late side), so by the time I was expecting my first child… Time was of the essence and I was chomping at the bit to get started being a MOM.
Prior to the internet – back in the “old” days – family, friends and books were best source of information on up-to-date baby products. My copy of “Baby Bargains” was dog-eared and read cover to cover. Tate was due in late August and I had painted his room and set up the crib by April. I had the glider-rocker in place by May and I would waddle in and admire the freshly painted periwinkle and pale yellow walls and I would sit and rock and rock and imagine myself, my baby in my arms…It was pure bliss.
…fast forward 18 YEARS….
Now he/we are shopping for his freshman dorm room…His whole life has led to this moment…it is not as if any of this is a big surprise, but I do, I feel surprised. I feel like my heart and brain are on two opposite ends of the earth and I cannot connect them….try as I might. It makes no sense and of course, it makes all the sense in the world. I could not be more proud of Tate….with his hard work and dedication to his dreams he made this one come true. If life and experience holds true, I know that… in time …this transition too will feel “normal”. But right now, right this minute…as I meander through the aisles of Target – the “DORM ESSENTIALS” list on my phone….and as I toss hangers and pencils and mattress pads into the cart…I feel…well, I feel Nothing. I do not feel joyful yet I don’t feel sad. I just feel strange and disoriented…like I am writing the “Dear John” letter in order to send it to myself. It is counter-intuitive to my heart…to pack him away…to say good-bye…so my heart has temporarily been rendered numb. Still, there is work to be done and stuff to be bought…so my brain is operating, granted we are in a “brown-out”...but it is operating, and working to keep HIM on track…get him where he needs to be. And I figure I will figure out the route home.
This is a passage. He is everything I wanted him to be and oh so much more…he is ready, and I probably never really will be, but then…I am. Somewhere in there, my heart just does not know it…not just yet.