Sunday, January 15, 2012

rhythm of life

laundry, laundry and more laundry
it's been just over 4 weeks ago that she came home from college for the christmas break. it was an adjustment for all of us to have her here again, but one we were glad to be making. we had all fallen into new rhythms when we became a family of 3 living under this roof - - the little sister got used to not sharing a bathroom, or make-up, or hair products; i became accustomed to the basement always being picked up, fewer dishes to wash, less laundry to do, one less plate to set at the table for our meals.

within her first week home, we figured out how to operate as a family of four again. we fell into the old rhythms without much effort. now don't think it was completely natural because there were plenty of days where i'd hear little sister hollering at big sister because a certain hair product had disappeared and big sister  accused little sister of raiding her closet because a particular shirt couldn't be found. sisterly love at it's finest, i tell ya!

i saw evidence of personal growth in our oldest girl. her world had gotten a little bigger over the last 4 months and her eyes had been opened a little wider. she learned that she's blessed. and that not everyone else is as fortunate as she is. she's met young adults from all walks of life. made lots of new friends. has been faced with making choices on her own which until now had been made by us, the parents. she learned that sometimes you can't always do the 'fun' stuff. sometimes you have to say no and be the girl that chooses to do homework v. a social function. sometimes you have to forego sleep to meet commitments.

i was sure that after a couple of weeks at home she'd be climbing the walls to get out. that she'd say it was 'boring' here at home. that she'd had enough of the family time and couldn't wait to get back to her own schedule which includes more social activities in a week than our calendar does in a month. to my pleasant surprise, that's not exactly what happened. her first 2 weeks at home were just that - - at home. time spent napping, catching up on tv shows, reading something other than text books, enjoying a full-access pass to a stocked fridge and pantry, and home-cooked meals. not once have i heard her say that 'she can't wait to go back.' it's been the opposite. she isn't ready to go back, to give up all the comforts of home again.

today is the last day of her break. tomorrow morning we will load her car and send her on her way back to campus. it will be like a lot of things in life - - the getting there is the hardest part. once she gets there she will be thrilled to be among her friends again, to once again have a whole new semester in front of her, to start with a clean slate, to meet more new people and to do some more growing into her own. and us, the ones left behind? well, we'll find our new rhythms too and we'll be counting the days until march when she'll be with us again for spring break.

3 comments:

Denise said...

I am so not ready for that transition. I can so relate though to the sister shenanigans.

thinking of you today - i am sure it will be a bit sad to see her go again.

Sharon said...

Ah, yes. I'm still going through this. My daughter, who has been home for the last mos. student teaching, just returned to school to finish up her masters. She'll be back in May. It's very quiet at the dinner table. There's no arguments about the bathroom usage at 6:00 a.m. in the morning...

BUT, I miss her. More than when she took short breaks with her undergraduate degree.

And then there is my married daughter...17 hours away...

2 1/2 more years and my third child will be off to college...leaving us a family of 3.

Sigh. I hear ya.

Sharon said...

oops...I left off 8 in the mos. part!