So How bad is it when they leave??

Laura - posted on 01/18/2009 ( 86 moms have responded )

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Hi Everyone!! I joined this group because I have a son who will be going away to college in the fall. While I'm really excited for him and he's more than ready....I'm wondering how I will handle it? He'll be about an hour and a half away.....so not that far, but far enough for him to gain his sense of independence. He is a wonderful young man and we have a wonderful, close relationship....so I'm sure I'm more having a hard time with this. I worry probably way too much.....how do you deal with it when you don't know where they are all the time.....what they are doing....and they no longer have to check in like they used too?

MOST HELPFUL POSTS

Lana - posted on 05/28/2009

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Get a puppy! It's like having another child all over again. When my oldest left, I was devastated, But Dakota was here and needed my attnetion. Now my son calls to see how the dog is doing! You have to know that watching your child grow into a young adult is a wonderfull experience. He even has learned to be frugal, thanks to all of the girls that have "adopted" him as their friend. He growing into a complete adult and a kinder, gentler version of the man we're used to dealing with. So, congratulate yourself for doing a great job raising him and enjoy the "growing" process.

Lisa - posted on 05/01/2009

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I have twin boys that went to college in different states---I cried after we left son 1 in Virginia, and cried again after son 2 left the following week. I don't think that anything that anybody has to say can prepare you for that feeling. What helped me was going to parents' weekend after about 5 weeks. I was able to meet the people they had chosen to surround themselves with, and realized that they were truly "ok" and had quality friends around them to care about them on a day to day basis (which used to be MY job!) Once I got to know these great kids, my heart was light and happy again. I think I just needed to know that if something was wrong, there were really good friends there to care enough to be involved.
One other suggestion--get and give your cell phone number to their buddies and roommates. That way if a battery goes low or your child is in class or whatever, you will have someone you trust to contact them and reconnect. Then do not abuse that connection, but know it is there if you need it.

Trisha - posted on 04/25/2009

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My daughter is an only child and is about to finish her second year of college. She goes to school 6 hours away and I won't lie, her first year was extremely difficult for both of us. We are close and talk regularly, but the entire 1st semeseter I cried every time we had to leave her. It got easier the second semester and now I don't cry when we part, but I still miss her a bunch. Year number two has been better and she is excelling in her classes now that she has adjusted to being so far away from friends and family. Just trust that you have raised your child well and he will be okay...and keep the lines of communication open. Having them move on in their lives is, after all, what we have been preparing them to do since the day they were born.

Anne - posted on 03/18/2009

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Hi I do not have any advice only a TRUE story to relate. I agree 100% that not only Will God watch over our college students but it is His Job and NOT OURS. In Dec of 2007 our daughter had not been home from college a full 24 hours and this is what happened. Oh by the way she goes to school in CA and we live in MI. We had dropped her off at the store where one of her best friends from high school was working. They were going to hang out for a few hours and she would let us know if she would be staying over night any were. About 2 hours later we get this phone call from  our daughter. "Mom I am all right but we were in a really bad accident and we should have been killed" she went on to explain that  her friend had been driving and turned on to a side road about 3 miles from our home (WE live in the country and some of the ditches are more like dikes)  Well it had rained earlier in the week so the 6 foot ditch they went in had about 3-4 feet of water. It would have been more but it had started to drain out to the bay. When her friend turned the corner she turned too close to the ditch and with the soft  shoulder the car flipped on its roof. Both girls were wearing their seat belts. Her friend rolled down the driver side window and even though the water started to poor into the car both girls were able to get out. They were wet had bruised  shins had lost their cell phones and cameras. BUT they were alive!!!!! The wrecker driver told us that had they not had their seat belts on it could have been a much sadder ending.  I realized Again that it was not my Job but God's Job to take care of our daughter. This made her 3 week Mission trip with her college later that year to Africa soooo much easier. Sorry this was so long, but I hope it incourages you.

Christy - posted on 01/21/2009

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Laura,



Well...I just traveled down that road this fall with my daughter.  She is going to school one state away, but a good 4-1/2 to 5 hours away (in GOOD weather!!!).  I spent several months before she went preparing, and praying.  I know iI was not ready to give her to the world, but also knew in my heart, she was ready.  All you can do is be proud that you prepared your son for this.  Your investment all these years is paying off and he is ready to go out there and make a difference:)  And with technolgoy (FACEBOOK!!!) and cell phones/texts -- you will be surprised how that distance will slowing diminish in size. 



When we dropped her off and when it was time to say goodbye, I clung to her like a baby and just sobbed.  Me and her boyfriend sat in the back seat and cried the whole way home!!!  Every so often I feel a void around the house --- but then I feel her smile when she sends me texts or pictures of her college life and how happy she is there.  As you realize they have come into their own and are doing fine, you manage.  I can't promise you that you won't cry -- I did as much crying the month before she left as I did after....and packing her stuff.  You look at them and their room and realize nothing will ever be the same.  But God is great and he will bring you through it!!!



Have fun with it while he is there --- send him silly care packages...Halloween candy and little Christmas stockings to hang...a gift package of his favorite snacks.  You sure sound like you have an incredible relationship with your son, and he may not HAVE to check in, but he will....your love and guidance brought him to that special WELCOME WEEKEND:)



Best advice - pray.  God hears your heart and will protect it.



God bless!



Christy



 

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LAURIE - posted on 08/24/2009

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HI LAURA I CAN RELATE I HAVE A SON PLAYING FOOTBALL TOO. WE HAVE THE ADDED WORRY OF INJURIES DURING FOOTBALL MINE WAS ALREADY HURT 2ND WEEK! SAW HIM THIS WEEK HE LOOKS SO DIFFERENT ALREADY

Peggy - posted on 08/23/2009

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My oldest is in his 3rd year at Penn State. And I took it hard but you do get use to it. I did learn to use text messaging when he left. So we do keep in touch.And it is great hearing the excitement is their voices when you talk to them about all then new things they are doing and learnig.

Terrie - posted on 08/23/2009

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Both of mine are in college. My son goes in downtown Cleveland, at CSU
But, he is also physically handicap, he has cerebral palsy. He's very smart and has learn to handle situations. We just took him back yesterday, to start his second year. I'm just so excited for him.....
My daughter will be going back to OSU. Just had gone in the spring quarter or semester, and yes its very hard. But look at the excitement for them!!!!
Plus my hubby and I were home just the two of us....That took getting use to.
I'm happy and excited for the both of them. Plus I email them, talk on the phone, and plan on sending cards and packages to the both of them.....

Robin - posted on 08/22/2009

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I miss my sophomore daughter, but the laundry took half as long with no children in the house this week....

[deleted account]

Quoting Laura:

So How bad is it when they leave??

Hi Everyone!! I joined this group because I have a son who will be going away to college in the fall. While I'm really excited for him and he's more than ready....I'm wondering how I will handle it? He'll be about an hour and a half away.....so not that far, but far enough for him to gain his sense of independence. He is a wonderful young man and we have a wonderful, close relationship....so I'm sure I'm more having a hard time with this. I worry probably way too much.....how do you deal with it when you don't know where they are all the time.....what they are doing....and they no longer have to check in like they used too?



Laura,



I have 4 sons, ages 33, 30, 26 and 20.  It is hard when they leave, you have to adjust to not really being a Mom anymore because they aren't living at home.  I remember thinking, what do I do with myself now?  Of course, I do still have my youngest at home with me.  You spend so many years raising them that you lose yourself in the process.  You have to start living with "yourself" again and that can be difficult because you are at least 20 years older and you don't have the same interests that you did 20 years ago.  The hardest thing for me has been when they are struggling with whatever difficulties you come across as an adult and you can't really help them except to offer your advice if they ask.  You can't kiss it and make it better anymore and that's so hard!



 



 

Kathy - posted on 08/17/2009

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It helps that my daughter and I still have special tv shows or movies that we watch when she comes home. She will bring home a couple of movies and we'll have a Mr. Darcy night or we'll watch a TV show together - me from home and her from her dorm room. It is a very tough adjustment, but there are little things that make it a bit easier. :)

Laurie - posted on 08/17/2009

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At first it's hard, so quiet. Then you start to adjust. Then they come home to visit, they leave again, and it's hard again for a day or so. Eventually you adjust . . . and then they come home for the summer! The house is MUCH cleaner when they're gone, and you get reacquainted (hopefully) with your husband!

LAURIE - posted on 08/16/2009

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Hi laura, My son left aug 10 for football training camp too.Im having a harder time with the football worrying then him leaving. The heat is making them drop like flies. He suffered dehyration cramps, lost 10 lbs the first three days. I was shocked I didnt cry when he left because I knew he was so happy to be going,But as a mom how do you turn off that constant worry meter? My son is only a hour and a half away too and its so hard not to just jump in the car and go rescue them Laurie

LAURIE - posted on 08/16/2009

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Hi Laura, I was looking for another mother of a football player! My son left aug. 10 for training camp too. I was ok with him going i didn't even cry because he is a great kid. Im having a hard time with worrying about injuries and reports of kids going to the hospital 1st week because of the heat . He lost ten lbs the first 3 days.Does this keep you up at night? Thank god for webcam!!! Laurie

Kim - posted on 07/01/2009

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The first week or two is the hardest. What I did, (I have an only child, a son like you) is redecorate his room. I told him that by the time he came back for Thanksgiving break, he will have a whole new room. Not only did that motivate me to get busy, it was something I was doing for him. I cleaned out his room (removed things from childhood) and totally redecorated his room by painting, new furniture, actual pictures on the wall (not posters) and new bedding and window treatment. It looks like a grown-ups room now. He was amazed at the transformation when he came home. It also helps me because now when I walk by his room, nothing really catches my eye to bring back memories of when he was little. That is what's so hard. He is a man now and even though to me he will always be my little boy, I have to stand back and support him from afar now. He has learned so much his first two years of college. Life lessons are always the hardest, so expect phone calls when he is frustrated and about to pull his hair out. Resist the urge "to fix it". Talk him through it and let him know he is not the first person to go through this and he will be fine. Encourage him and praise him. It's never easy to let your baby go out into the world, but have confidence in how you raised him.

Lori - posted on 07/01/2009

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It hurts at first, and yes you worry but you have to trust you did a good job in raising him and trust that influence in his life...trust me , my son decided that he was moving out his sr. year of high school...all over a girl... well, he's still on his own, the gf is gone and the lines of communications are opened... he comes home to do his laundry, eat us out of house and home, ( and i wouldn't have it any other way) and calls when he needs us, from advice to anything else... as for you, its much like when they first got their driver's license....you'll worry, you'll want to call every hour, but trust in God and how you raised him; they come back with a greater apprehiation for mom and dad...btw, he starts college in the fall as well

Kim - posted on 06/09/2009

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I am very close to my son as well. He is my only child. As soon as he left, I totally revamped his room. I changed it from a little boys room (teenager stuff all over) to a very sophisticated room for him to come home to. He loved it and it also kept me busy those first few weeks so I didn't just sit around missing him. Also, they will email, call and text you alot in the beginning, but don't get upset when it slows down. It just means that they are beginning to stand on their own two feet and don't need that lifeline as much. It's sad and wonderful at the same time. You will be ok. Be ready for those late night calls during exam week. My son would get so stressed and just needed to vent and hear his mommy say it was going to be alright. Just love em from afar and celebrate homecomings.

Lana - posted on 06/01/2009

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This will give you a great chance to re-connect with friends you might not have had time for. Coffee with the girls or an impromtu dinner out can be fun and the busier you keep yourself, the better it is. Don't be shocked if you get the"I'm bored" when he's home. They have a wonderful social life that starts when they get into college. Much more active than high school. I still look forward to the" Hi mom" phone calls but I'm not waiting around for them anymore because I've moved on to a more social setting as well.This will be a very exciting time for you and I truly hope you enjoy it. I'm getting ready to send my "baby" off to college this August and I know I'll go through an even harder transition, but in a way I'm kind of excited too since I'll have some time for me now. I m ight even take a class or two again. So, good luck and enjoy!

Kimbel - posted on 05/30/2009

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perfect reply ! i did exactly what you said and I have done it every yr with both of my kids and you feel good about where they are going to school and they do too!

Kimbel - posted on 05/30/2009

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Texting is the answer ! He will text you tons and you will feel connected and it is fun!

Lana - posted on 05/24/2009

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My daughter Brandi goes to college in Kentucky and we live in Oregon.I thought that I would never live with Brandi being so far away. Her freshman year she flew out to orientation not knowing anyone 2 days after her 18th birthday- I had to rent her motel room for that night because she wasn't old enough!! I was terrified!! Her first real day at college was orientation, she got to move her stuff into the dorm and learn about the campus. She met a few people including all the RA's and 2 girls who lived in her dorm. Her second day when she was done with orientation she helped other students move in and she met more people!!
Every night she would call me and tell about what was going on and she would talk to the rest of the family. She gave me her class schedule so I would know where she was and she had my work schedule we have a 3 hour time difference so no late or early calls!! I didn't worry so much she had friends and she was doing ok in her classes.

About 2 weeks after she started she ran for House Council and won! She called me so excited, she told me all about her new duties and what she was going to do.A week later she called and told me "Mom I think I found where I finally fit. I fit in here!!" News to me ears.

Brandi is taking a full load, She is majoring in Biology and is always struggling to get all her work done.I still worry a bit but she has figured it out herself. She checks in online or by text or phone every other day. This next term will be different because she will be in Australia from July to November to we are getting Skype!!
I have learned that I have done my task for raising her. Now it is her turn to show how well I have done.And I keep the faith!!

Amanda - posted on 05/17/2009

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Hi Laura, I feel that I am in the same boat as you are, my daughter is leaving in August for her first semester. Though she is only going to be an hour and half away too I still feel like its 8 hours away. She will not be coming in at night after being out with her friends, or studing at the library. We have a very close relationship and we check in all the time. I fear that she is going to be so busy that she is not going to have the time to stop to e-mail or text. She has a hefty class load, she is preparing for pre-med, so he load is heavy. I hope she finds time to just stop and say hello, and fill me on her day, just like we have been doing right along...

Anne - posted on 05/06/2009

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Hi Laura and all of the moms that have answered this post. I have yet another chance to share a time when mom was not able to keep my daughter safe. HOWEVER GOD NEVER FAILS we got an e-mail from our daughter yesterday that she had been mugged. All that was stolen was her mp3 player that really did not work very good. She assured us she was fine. The part that just again proves to me that it is not my responsibility to keep her safe is that she is studding in South America for her college program. She will be home in 3 weeks.

Mimi - posted on 04/20/2009

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I don"t know if I can get ready ahead of time. I cry now thinking about it and he's a Junior in HS. I told him to live away and if he gets up iy will be a miracle, but he's an amazing guy completely self sufficient. I'll miss him terribly, but at least there"s texting.

Barbara - posted on 04/20/2009

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Hey Laura...I know you've gotten MANY replies..but I just joined this group and thought I could give you some comforting words. My daughter, Morgan is a junior in college...my first to leave. We live in Birmingham and she decided to go 5 hours away with NO friends! Morgan had always been very reserved and quite shy so I was a little more than worried. Her first semester there were lots of calls and trips home monthly...every year it has tapered off and she is such a confident young woman whom I greatly admire. He'll be fine and so will you. I still miss having her here, but we enjoy her time at home, which is much less frequent. Good Luck!!

Kathy - posted on 04/16/2009

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I know how hard it was for me. My daughter left NY and went to school hundreds of miles away in SC. I was secure with the fact that I had raised her well and that she was independent and strong with a great moral base. I really missed her but didnt worry much that she couldnt handle herself. The hardest part for me was missing seeing her everyday. She is one of my three that has finished college and now she is married and living a few minutes away. Seeing her blossom into such a fine young woman brings me so much pride and joy. As long as you know that youve given him all of the tools he needs to care for himself..try not to worry so much and just do as the rest of us... and miss him like crazy and look forward to when he comes home for visits. :) Good luck to you.

Pamela - posted on 04/16/2009

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I have a daughter leaving for college next year too. I don't know how you deal with it. She is such a sweetie and our family will miss her... One thought I heard  from a mom I respect was after you drop them off...set up their room..and let them have some space then stay the night at a hotel and take them and anyone who wants out to lunch the next day....check on their room for needs they might have that you didn't for see and do one last run to the store...after all said and done leave but you guys head off to a mini vacations to take your mind off of things.,,so you don't get too down..I think that is what we are planning

Sandy - posted on 04/04/2009

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My oldest daughter went to a University about 1 1/2 hours away. I was so happy for her and yet every time I thought about it, I would cry. When she drove away I sobbed. After a bit I stopped, but for the first few days I would cry periodically. I talked to her several times tht first week. Slowly over time I would call her once a week or so.



She graduated last May and decided on a grad school accross the country. It is so hard having her so far away, she has only come home once because of distance and schedule. We flew her home and back for Christmas. She got engaged last summer and trying to plan a wedding via email and phone calls is extremely frustrating.



Now my youngest daughter has received an ROTC scholarship and she is going away to a school that has an ROTC school for nursing. She will be a nurse for the Navy. I am coping at the moment but don't like to think about the away part. As I type this I have tears welling up in my eyes.

Susan - posted on 04/03/2009

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My daughter, the youngest of the 4 kids chose the college route, and although it was rough, I was kinda glad that she wasn't under foot and complaining all the time! LOL She's 2 1/2 hours away and has to do alot of growing up in the past 4 years. She still does stupid stuff, but didn't we all at that age? As far as the not knowing...if he's a good kid he'll check in with you from time to time. Don't be afraid to call him and let him know you're thinking about him and if things are ok. My daughter and I talk almost every day. And boys usually don't do that. If you're a church goer and pray, that's pretty much all you can do. You've raised him to be a responsible and good kid, so you just need to let go and let God. It will get easier. There are times I miss my daughter and wish she were here, but I think that's MY own issues.

Carla - posted on 04/02/2009

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I dropped my daughter off at college which was across the U.S. from our home (5 hour flight), it was probably the hardest thing I have ever done. She cried, I cried. The plan was for me to stay a week to help her adjust, etc. We landed on campus and I never saw her. LOL I was a bit sad, she was happy about her new chapter in life. When I left, we both cried. As it turns out, we see each other about every 6-8 weeks because of the holidays and she plays a sport for the University so I fly out to watch games. it's been a year, and we still both cry when we say our goodbyes, even knowing we will see each other in 6-8 weeks. The hardest thing is letting go, the best reward is to know that you succeeded as a parent and your child is secure enough to go to college and make the right choices. I'm not goint to lie, there is lots of alcohol, sex and everything else on campus, but I am very fortunate that me and my daughter talk all the time about everything, and I do mean everything. We text and email all the time, and talk on the phone once a week (due to poor reception). Keep the lines of communication open and expect to hear things you don't want to hear. You are right, you won't know what they are doing nor do they have to check in, but can only hope they make the right choices and are responsible adults. With all this being said, the fact that your son is going to college shows he's moving in the right direction and 1 1/2 hours isnt too far for quick visits. You may be surprised how often he comes home fro those homecooked meals, his own bed, etc. Best of luck to you and yoru son.

Dana - posted on 04/02/2009

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When my daughter left in the fall of 08, my hubby told her she had to call and check in twice a week (she is 3 hours away) just to let me know she is OK....



She calls everyday and has since she left, some days its more than once. It will be hard, the house seems so quiet with her gone, even tho we still have a 6 year old in the house. Find something you enjoy to do...let him know that you expect to hear from him AT least a couple of times a week just to set your mind at ease that he is OK.

Sherry - posted on 04/01/2009

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Even though my eldest is in college, and #2 will be starting, they are staying home. I am NOT looking forward to when my kids move out. I know I will be a blubbering idiot.

[deleted account]

My husband and I are experiencing the last child leaving home syndrome. My sons are six years apart in age. When my oldest left for college it took me a long time to adjust. Every time he came home to visit saying goodbye was so hard. It took a couple years for me to adjust saying goodbye. Once he was gone I was ok, it was the goodbye that was the hardest.He did great, graduated and got a great job. My youngest is in his first year of college. It was just as hard when he left but experiencing it for the second time I've adjusted a little faster. I miss both my boys but I feel I've done my job, now it's their turn to grow and become men. I will always be there for them, all they have to do is call me. We live in different states, they live in Wa and I live in Tx. We stay in touch through cellphones, texting, e-mail, facebook, and web cam. It's not the same as seeing them in person but it helps when they get homesick or I get to missing them.

[deleted account]

 Sending care packages helps.  It's not only fun for you to look for the items to put in the care package, but also fun for your college kid to get a care package.  I created a group called Moms Are Mailing Again (MAMA).  I get together with my girlfriends that have a young adult away from home, either in college, the military service or just living away from home.  We meet once a month for about 2 hours.  Each of us brings a large bubble envelope, which becomes our care package.  And, each of us brings enough items to put in each care package.  The purpose of the group "was" for us to make care packages for each of our kids.  However, after meeting with my MAMA group for over a year, it now has become a "great excuse" to get together with my girlfriends.  Check out the website for more information of how to start your own Moms Are Mailing Again group, by going to www.momsaremailingagain.com   I know you will have so much fun!

Carol - posted on 03/26/2009

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bad, meltdown, but you pick yourself up and keep moving. it all works out, you`ll have a new excity life. it just takes a few months, ,,best of luck and hang in there.

Lynn - posted on 03/26/2009

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My daughter went away (2 -3 hrs) to college in Sept. We moved her into residence and everything was fine until the goodbyes. Her sister started crying which made me cry which made her cry. Her father made the mistake of saying he loved her so she threw us all out slamming the door in the process. On our drive home she called her father and said "Me too!" and then hung up quickly.



 



You get used to them not being at home. It is nice not to have the fights for the bathroom between two daughters on school mornings! When she comes home to visit it is nice until they start fighting again - normally about 3 days.



 



I tell her to check in at least once per week either by facebook or cell phone just so I know she is ok. So far that hasn't been a problem.



 

Jean - posted on 03/24/2009

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Wow, this site would have been helpful 2 years ago when my first son went off to school. Now I am the mom of 2 college students, both boys, both 3 hours away(in different directions) and both student athletes which limits time at home due to the committment to their sport. It was a whirlwind for almost 4 years with 2 so close to eachother that I really didn't have time to consider how my life would be when they were both gone. Now the house is pretty quiet and I really miss them at the dinner table but I am beginning to see some really serious benefits to this;

1. I noticed that there is another guy at the table who I hardly recognized, its my husband! We're actually getting reaquainted! It's like dating without having to lose 20lbs!

2. I buy my favorite ice cream and actually get to eat some.

3. My heating bills are lower, no more 45minute showers, twice a day x 2!

4. No more washing clothes you know you just washed and were now on the bottom of the laundry because they were too lazy to put them away!

5. You know where the TV remote is, and you get to use it.

6. You don't have to hunt for missing dishes, glasses and silverware under their beds or in the basement

7. You don't have to grab your keys and run to your own car just so YOU can drive.

8. If they forget their lunch, homework, track shoes......tough!

9. No more debates about going to Church, making their beds, cleaning their bathroom or picking up the 10 pair of shoes at the front door. AHHHH!

10. No more being dissappointed that they didn't acknowledge the things you did that day that made their lives easier, cleaner, safer and comfortable.



Don't get me wrong, I love them to peices. They were both home for spring break, different weeks, thank God and I was excieted to see them and have them home and a little teary when they went back. But I learned after my first sons freshman year that the time goes very fast. That no sooner are they gone, they are right back again. The first year is always challenging. For you its the letting go, for them it the being free! So now is the time to focus on you and your other relationships. I loved the way Juli put it "I have released her to make her own decisions (and mistakes). I'm here for advice,but rarely asked" You have layed the foundation its time for them to build upon it.Good luck to your son and to you.

[deleted account]

Quoting Laura:

I think that's the thing I'm dreading the most.....feeling like my arm is missing....or like my heart is hurting.


Hey, Laura,



It is a little bit like a pieve of your heart is missing.



Our daughter is in college this year, and it has been a challenging adjustment for me. 



 I have found that facebook helps me get an idea of what's going on in her life.  Which is good, because we don't hear from her much! 



Since our daughter doesn't come home much (1 x a semester & we're only 1 hour away) and has become hyper-independent, my husband & I have come to the realization that it's time for us to move on too.



God never intended them to live with us forever. 



There's a time for everything, and now is our time to refocus on other things. 



New interests: 



We've gone back to school.  My husband's working on a masters and I'm working on my bachelors again.  And I may beat her to graduation if she doesn't get her rear in gear!



We go kayaking once a month, and pick a different river location each time.



We're planning a 9 day vacation during the SCHOOL YEAR- something we haven't done in a very long time.



Learning to let go is hard, and I learn a new lesson each day. 



1.  I never thought I 'knew it all' but from a freshman's point of view I know NOTHING!  LOL



2.  We'll hear from her when she needs something.  Sooner or later it's bound to happen!



3.  I have released her to make her own decisions (and mistakes).  I'm here for advice, but rarely asked



4.  Recalling my own first year away at school- I was an idiot to my parents too, and I came to my senses - eventually my daughter will too.



5.  Don't way it won't happen to you- we were VERY close, and we will be again. 



College is SUPPOSED to change them.  The life lessons they learn from experience will stay with them forever- hopefully in a good way.



I don't think there's any way around the heartache of it.  It's bittersweet.



The pain is more about that childrearing season of our lives ending than it is about the exciting new changes for our kids. 



We can focus on the pain, or focus on the good.



At the end of the day I remember that God still has her in the palm of His hand...

Laurie - posted on 03/21/2009

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Hey Laura, I don't think there is anything you can do to prepare yourself for how hard it is going to be. When my daughter left for college (she is a sophomore now) I cried for days. I was so worried about her, her safety and her happiness. I found that when I finally realized that she was happy, I was relax a little. I still worried,and still do worry. She is in an urban environoment, which has its benefits, more things to do than party-but also has its drawbacks. Her first year away I made her call every night when she was in for the night. If she didn't call me, I called her.If she didn't answer I called her roommates. Crazy, I know. I've gotten a little better with time, I don't panic if I don't hear from her everyday now. She has really matured and has made good decisions and knowing that really helps with the not knowing what they are doing and not checking in aspect of living away from home. My son is also going away in the fall and I'm hoping that the second time around will be a little easier. I'm sure it'll be rough for you in the beginning, I have found that, at first,it is really hard to let go. Good luck.

Laura - posted on 03/21/2009

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I think that's the thing I'm dreading the most.....feeling like my arm is missing....or like my heart is hurting. He'll check in w/out any protests.....LOL...he already keeps saying, "I'm more worried about my mom than I am me!!" Now here's the real kicker....the following year, my daughter will head off to college too!! So...two in one year.....I should have spaced them better, huh?? Although.....she says she is going to stay at home and commute. :)

Lisa - posted on 03/21/2009

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Wish I could give you an easy answer.  For me, sending the oldest off the college was a lot like sending the youngest off the kindergarten.  While I knew it was more about me than him, I had a really hard time.  I think what would have helped was to acknowledge that it was one of those bit transitions in life - which I didn't do until a total stranger responded to my saying my oldest just left for college "didn't you feel like you arm was missing or something?"  Maybe a little extreme analogy, but she made me realize that yes, this is really hard and maybe it is normal to sort of grieve not having your kid around all the time, not checking that they are home and in bed safe every night.  Finally, I think it is okay to tell your kid that you need to have her/him check in on a regular basis - after all, at 18 they are still kids really and we are paying for this college experience and if we need that for us, the kiddo should be okay with that!  Beware that getting them to actually do this can be difficult.

Laura - posted on 03/18/2009

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WOW!!!! I'm so happy she's ok!! God is in control....thats for sure!! I'm glad people are reminding me of that because silly me and my "human-ness" I forget! God does have a purpose for all of us, my son included! Ironically, he is going to a nice, private catholic college where building their character and faith is just as important to them as providing their academics. I'm really glad about that.....thanks for sharing. After hearing your story, I'm sure God has an amazing plan for your daughter's life too!!

Laura - posted on 03/17/2009

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Thank you Kristy....you're absolutely right!!! I know God will watch over him and protect him. He's a smart kid and he does really good in school and in life.....so sometimes I wonder what I'm so worried about!!! He's destined for great things!

Kristy - posted on 03/17/2009

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I completely understand and sympathize with you. I have a son that will be leaving for college but not till the Fall of 2010, however we have already been a college visit to where he wants to go and most likely will be going. It is about 2 hours away, which isn't bad but for me it's going to be really hard. We have also been very close and the thought of not knowing what he is doing all the time and if he is safe drives me crazy. However, I have to give him to God and trust that God will watch over him and keep him safe. He is a good kid and does extremely well in school and I don't see him having any problems when he does leave, it will be me!  Give it to God and He will watch out for both of you!

Regina - posted on 03/16/2009

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Ask him to call at least once a day, that you are interested in his new life and would like for him to share it with you. My son is at Baylor Law School and it has worked for me these past 41/2 years and it has drawn us closer.

Carrie - posted on 03/13/2009

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my sons posts a video post card for me once a week on here.I look foward to this all week long.Now his friends parents have seen it and want there kids to send one.

Laura - posted on 03/13/2009

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Thanks....it does! I do text so that will be a good way to keep in touch along w/ email, facebook etc. Everyone at work keeps telling me...."Empty nest isn't so bad!!" I must admit...there are times when I think I will really enjoy just being w/my husband again!! Just the two of us....they way it was BEFORE they invaded our life!! LOL

Anne - posted on 03/12/2009

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Hi, both of our daughters move to opposite ends of the country within 3 weeks of each other three school years ago. That  summer I was a basket case when the girls were not around. I knew it was important for them to do God wanted them to do in their lives, but could He have wanted them a little closer to home like still in their own bedrooms. Well to make a long story short , I survived  and they are doing wonderfully. We live in MI the oldest is in NC the youngest is in CA Just remember you instilled beliefs and values in him that he will take with him were ever he goes. I also realized that for the first time in over 22 years my husband and I really did have time to be a married  couple and not just parents. If you do not have a family cell phone plan if you can get one that allows you to call each other and not burn minutes that will help. Also the same goes for texting. If you do not text him, learn these two things and e-mail are great ways to keep in touch. I have one more suggestion. Get  web cameras, and install the free version of skype or some other program that allows you see each other  as you talk. Our youngest is studying in South America and will not be back to the US until late May. It is VERY expensive to call each other. This is a great way to really see how she is doing.  I am sorry this was so long, I hop it helps.

Teresa - posted on 03/12/2009

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My daughter came home for the holiday break, and she likes college so well she says "coming home is a hassle with all the packing and such I would rather just stay here"..



So we take the couple hour drive about once a month to see her and make sure all is well and she has what she needs and such.



This is her first year away, She has been so busy with her classes and friends she seems to never get home sick.



I am to the point that I am happy she has adjusted so well to college living..funny how when ya have 2 girls at home, one leaves how different it is around the house...LoL

Christina - posted on 03/05/2009

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I have a daughter who attends collegwe in NYC, about 2 hours from here. I was quite nervous at first, especially as my colleagues kept warning me to warn her to be careful!! But you have to trust that you raised your child with common sense and let them move into adult life. I have a son who just spent 20 weeks away in Boston on an externship. Age 20, first time living on own, going to work every day. But we kept in touch via Facebook and cell, and he did just great! My daughter is super busy at school and has many new friends. I miss her more than she misses me!! Just resist the temptation when he is first away to call all the time. He needs time to adjust too.

Adele - posted on 02/28/2009

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I too feel your pain, my only child - son will be leaving in fall. I get all choked up just thinking about it. He's first choice for school is six hours away!! I trying to find different things now to take on in order to absorb some of my extra time for when he's gone. I've looked into volunteering and becoming a big sister.

Laura - posted on 02/28/2009

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Well, reality hit me hard again last week. My son has to be to his college by Aug 5th for football training camp. Last week, I took all three kids for their dental cleanings. We went to make the next appt, (6 mo's later) and the girl asked me if Aug 21st was ok for all three to come together again. At first I said, "Sure" and then it hit me.....I said, "Oh no....not for all three. Just for the younger two. Vince will be gone by then." :( My eyes filled with tears....and they just said, "Oh ok...he can come in when he's home on Christmas break." Then I realized....his sister's birthday is Aug 30th....and he wouldn't be home for that either!! (We always take the birthday "honoree" out together as a family!!



So...it's about 5 mo's away and I'm just hugging him all I can now....I know it's not the end of the world....he's going to do GREAT! I'm super proud of him!

Carrie - posted on 02/26/2009

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Laura,



I sent my first one off in Sept.I cried all summer with the same worries as you. My son is only 45 minutes away. It was so hard in the beginning. He dose come home on weekends sometimes.But we do chat on the phone and on here.Belive it or not as much as I stressed over him leaving when he came home for Christmas break I couldnt wait for him to go back.You do get used to it.I have my youngest leaving this comming Sept. and going threw it again.But as parents we have done the best job we can.Now we have to let them grow and go knowing all we have tought them and hope they have listened.He will be fine but as parents we worry.The first  semister was hard but this semister hes doing much better.

Sherita - posted on 02/25/2009

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I am a single mom and have an only child who is across country in New York going to school...The separation was really difficult for both of us at first but this semester she and I both are way more adjusted...We talk on the phone pretty much daily when we can and I send her care boxes from home...I am proud of us both she is growing in her independence and I am getting my life back in Alabama the relationship has morphed into something different....but its good...I just pray we will roll with the changes and stay close!

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