Patrick Leaves for College Today

The last time a child left for college, I allowed myself  to be very vulnerable online in the days that immediately followed. I mused aloud, did a lot of soul searching, took a long look at homemaking and mothering and home education up to that point. I left my heart bare. It was probably one of the worst mistakes I've ever made. I doubt I'll ever fully recover and I know I'll never do that again.

I know now that there are some people who will never understand the enormity of such transitions in a wholehearted household, particularly in the soul of a woman. They will never understand how a mother's heart and home are not fair game, especially at a tender time.

And I know that there are kindred spirits who understand without words.

For those dear friends, I'm very grateful.


So. Here goes. The leaving-to-college post.

Goodbyes don't seem to get easier for me. If anything, knowing how this whole off-to-college thing can play out makes goodbye harder. I really like our family life, so change doesn't come without a huge struggle. Patrick, however, has said goodbye previously; we've had a bit of a practice. And we have a good coping strategy. Last time, Mary Beth made a slideshow for him. The plan this time was to update the slideshow (particularly to include Hilary), but I have just discovered that all the pictures from the first time (and from most of the last 3 years of family life), carefully saved on an external hard-drive, are now inaccessible. And since that is way too much emotional overload for me to process today, I'm just going to re-run the old slideshow. The sentiments are all the same. We love this boy so much and our "wish" is really a fervent prayer.

Paddy is so ready to take on the world. And he is going to both bless and be blessed by the University of Virginia and that sweet place of heaven-on-earth called Charlottesville. It's going to be amazing!

Your prayers for him are very much appreciated.

Hilary, tea time is at 2:00 and the girlies are so looking forward to having you with them this afternoon! It's all good. God's got this.