Friday, July 31, 2015


There are so many things you can't really prepare for when launching your first child from the nest. You cannot truly prepare for how tedious and stressful the college application process can be. You cannot understand how perplexing it will be to decide on a meal plan package when all you know is that at home they seem to eat constantly. You cannot begin to fathom how much money you will spend on what feels like nothing- hangers, laundry detergent, shampoo, extra sheets...poof! You just spent five...million...dollars... (Okay, not five million. But, you know, a lot).

And you can't prepare for how quiet it feels when they are gone.

But then you get used to things. And, in our case, as I've said before, maybe you get eased into things because they go to school close to home and you continue to see them on a semi-weekly basis for laundry, food, money, and just because. And even though you wonder at times if staying so close to home was such a good idea you finally admit that maybe you were, gulp, wrong because it seems to be going so well. 

Yeah, maybe all that.

What a great story.

The End. Right?


Because do you know what "they" do then?! "They" decide to throw you a curveball in the eleventh hour of summer and tell you that "they" are thinking of transferring schools!! And then "they" actually go through with the application process and get transcripts sent and ask for recommendations and talk on the phone with admissions counselors! (I ask you, where was all this self-motivation and industriousness the FIRST time around?!) And after all that, "they" do in fact get into a new school and decide that, yes, "they" do want to transfer, and so now "they" are leaving in three short weeks for Southern California!

Have you figured out who "they" is yet? Have you picked up on the fact that this may not just be an exercise in fun hypothetical stories?

Uh huh. Because "they" is determined to finally see us lose our ever-lovin minds.

BUT, let's keep our eye on the prize here. Because as head spinning as all of that is- do you know what is really most important?

Do you know the one thing we should not lose sight of in all of this?

With all of the packing and prepping and planning that the next three weeks will entail, do you know what we should all remember above all else.


Okay, maybe we were both a little bit right. He was right that what he needed was here, for awhile. But I was right that at some point he'd need to stretch his wings a little bit more.

He's always had it in him. Always marched to the beat of his own drummer with a style all his own. Always done things in his own time, in his own way.

So, now, just when we got comfortable. He's shaking things up again.

Gotta love him.

And we do.

So long, Seattle.
Jack has left the building.

Sunday, July 12, 2015

Preparing to Launch v. 2.0

I started writing this blog the summer before Jack's senior year in high school. Our firstborn was poised to leave the nest and suddenly I felt woefully unprepared for such a momentous occasion. Was he ready? Had we taught him enough? Would he remember any of it? Would he get into college? Which college? Will he succeed? Will he ever stop leaving half-full glasses of days-old-nasty-looking-liquids everywhere?

Turns out the answers were: yes, hopefully, most of it, YES, more than one, so far,

And, let's be honest. His launching wasn't nearly so traumatic as it might have been considering he took a great big running start, leaped into the unknown, aaand landed 2 miles from home. He is currently living at home again as we speak.

So...perhaps I should have dialed it down a notch with all of the wailing and gnashing of teeth three years ago?

But we are again. And for reasons I cannot explain I feel I am even less prepared for this next child's first flight than I was the first one.

 I ask you, does this look like the face of a child who should leave home?!?

I keep catching myself staring at him and thinking, W-w-w-wait a minute. You mean you're leaving too?!

And then I imagine him looking back at me like this:

We have a lot of these imaginary conversations because in real life he's kind of a man of few words. (Except when he's singing and then he has a lot of words. LOUD words. Musical, but loud.)

And most of the time I'm super chill about the whole thing. I'm all it's all gooood, man and hakuna matata and whatevs...

But every once in awhile (okay, every least once...or a dozen times) I go full blown Carrie Underwood and start running around with my hands in the air belting out, JESUS TAKE THE WHEEL because I. cannot. even.

And beyond the odd quiet we will be left with when our Sinatra-singing Mad Man leaves the house, there is also the sense that maybe we are moving toward other changes that I can't yet see.

I'm not a big fan of change. 

Have you noticed?

But for so many years there were ideas and plans and dreams that we tossed out there and the conversation always ended with, Maybe...but not until the boys are out of high school. For sure not until then. Maybe once they've both graduated...

These two? Out of high school? That's a million years away...

And now here we are, one year away from venturing into that mythical land of hypotheticals and possibilities known as Both Boys Are Out of High School. 

What does that land look like? I honestly have no idea.

Of course, we still have this showstopper.

Thank goodness. I think we are all glad I still have 8 years to prepare for her departure. Pray that Carrie Underwood comes up with a new theme song for me by then. 

Until then, welcome to Preparing to Launch v. 2.0.

Because when I wasn't looking, this one grew up, too.

My Mad Man.
Fly to the moon, Son. Play among the stars.
In other words, I love you.