So, as all of you know, my daughter, Heather, is headed off to college next week. First I want to know where all those years went?! It's so not fair that the years have disappeared, but even if I'm not ready for my little girl to be a young adult, she is.
If I can offer you one piece of advice it would be, enjoy the time you have with your kiddos while you can.
Heather has never been anything but a joy to me. Even in the few times (all of which I can probably count on one hand) she was upset with mom for whatever reason, she wasn't the sort of person I didn't want to be around. She didn't throw herself on the floor and have temper tantrums. She didn't yell, "I hate you! I hope you get hit by a truck!" She didn't go to her room and slam her door and then throw things against the wall. Most times, I would just get "the" look and she would go off to her room to cool off by herself. Heather has raised her voice only a few times, and in most of those instances it was to give someone who was upsetting mom a piece of her mind. She's very defensive of mom, and mom is very defensive of her. We are a good team, and we look out for each other.
I'm going to miss her. A lot. When I have to leave her at her residence hall and get in my car and drive home alone, I will cry. A lot.
Working where I do, helicopter parents are a way of life. I have never been one and won't turn into one when she's on her own for the first time. As much as it pains a parent to see their child in any sort of distress; children, no wait, make that young adults, need to learn by their mistakes. That's not to say, if she calls and asks for help, advice, a shoulder, an ear, or a couple of dollars I'm going to tell her, "no," but I'm not going to tell her how, when, where, and why she needs to do whatever it is she needs to do to succeed in the grown up world. Heck, I'm hardly qualified to do that, since I'm not so sure of my own successes. Failures walk up and slap you in the face, successes tend to be more subtle.
However, I can say with great pride that Heather is my most important and obvious success. Heather is well adjusted, smart, beautiful (inside and out,) articulate, confident, and she possesses one quality that will serve her well in anything that she does, at anytime in her life – common sense. Heather will do well. I know this. But I still will miss her. A lot.