Dishes and Doors

Dear Oldest Son and Oldest Daughter,

I just want you to know that when you left tonight to go back to college and I didn’t walk you out to the car, it’s my way of hiding. Hiding from strong emotions. I gave you a big hug and kiss, but went right back to washing the dinner dishes.

I didn’t even realize that I was running.

Running from the sadness and grief of letting you go and grow up.

They warned me.

People warned me that my kids would grow up but I didn’t believe them…

and I just couldn’t fathom the idea that I would no longer be needed.

You say, “but I’ve been there at the university for a few years now.

And I’m only 45 mins away.

And we have a good relationship???

Yes, that’s true, but until you are a parent, you won’t know the amalgam of feelings. In parenting, you feel the shame when your kids make poor choices. You feel the pride of your child’s success.

And we all know that parents make it about themselves. I’m no different.

Yet my job as a parent is almost done.

Sadness mixed with pride mixed with frettin’ and closure.

So…I love you both bunches. If you feel I’m pushing you both away, I probably am. So you’ll have to remind me

To quit it.


(photo by madmolecule and modern carpentry)

10 responses to “Dishes and Doors”

  1. Jon

    I love you mom

  2. Greg D

    What a nice little article. They sure do grow up fast. Thanks for sharing that…

  3. Liz

    Gulp. From your friend with the 6 and 3 year old whom I hold tight every single day.



  5. Leann

    Ah! I feel your bitter-sweet pain, dear friend. <3

  6. Sandi


    You’ll always be needed, just differently. Thankfully, mine are still living at home while at school.

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