Last Friday was the big day – the day I moved my daughter into her dorm at college. Luckily, the drive was only an hour or so. On arrival to her new “home town,” we were greeted with numerous signs, welcoming the students. A fast food restaurant piped in a local radio station, that devoted its broadcast to all things campus.
We topped off the drive with a wait in a line of cars in a parking lot adjacent to campus, waiting for our turn to get to the dorms, unload and move out. It was quite a site to behold, as ROTC members and anyone ‘lucky enough’ to have been part of early move-in converged on the cars, grabbing boxes and lamps and chairs and flat-screens. (Who knew so many kids came to college with a new flat screen?) Within 15 minutes, our cars were empty (we had two – filled to the brim, I might add.)
The student helpers looked weary (well, except for the ROTC guys, who never show a sign of fatigue). I’d have been a bit weary too, if forced to walk to the top floor a zillion times. Imagine my sigh of relief, as I remembered my daughter was on the second floor…
Once we’d gotten all the boxes in the room, it was clear we were going to be several steps ahead of many others – her roommate, a member of the band, had moved in five days earlier, so half the stuff was good to go.
As we stood in the half-done room, covered in a sea of new boxes, suitcases, crates and, uh, stuff, Hannah’s first order of business was to finally put the sheets and comforter she’d gotten for Christmas on her bed. Oh sure, she’d forgotten what they looked like, but she’d learned well. Make the bed first!
Then she just stood in the room, looking a bit lost, not knowing what to do. So I opened the suitcases and we put away clothes, put together lamps and a TV stand and TV, organized her shower bucket, and made quite a bit of progress. Before long, we’d finished everything except the job of decorating. I figured that was something she and her roommate should do on their own, so my job was finished.
But it didn’t feel like it was time to leave (or maybe I just didn’t want to…). My adrenaline rush was slowing down to a drip, as excitement for her was replaced with sadness for myself. My baby girl was no longer a baby girl. She was a college girl, now.
I had visions of her calling all weekend, filling me in on her latest discovery on campus, her tales of buying text books and attending “Welcome Freshmen!” parties, and left her to her new adventure.
But the phone was silent, as if all of a sudden I was a distant memory. It wasn’t until last night that I got a series of texts. Granted, none were complete sentences, just phrases like: things are great, lovin’ it! so busy – sororities!
But I guess that’s just how it goes. She’s a college girl, now.