I know for some parents, this commercial rings true. But we just sent our oldest off to start her third year of college last weekend, and as happens every year since she was a freshman, I’m feeling a little blue.
Of course, I’m not nearly as bad as I was her first year away. Freshman year was the WORST! Oh mama, was I ever a basket case! Older wiser parents assured me it would get better, but I didn’t believe them. How could this gaping hole in my heart ever go away? Surely, I would never be happy again.
But, believe it or not, those older, wiser parents were right. It did get better. Eventually. So, I figured maybe I’d share a few of my suggested “DO’s” and “DON’Ts” for those parents who have just, or are about to, deposit their firstborn into the college life and are now trying to adjust to daily life without them. Sooo, here goes…
DO appreciate how clean and lovely her bedroom looks and REMAINS when she’s not currently living in it.
DON’T dwell on how much you miss him. Get out. Have lunch with friends. Try something new. Laugh.
DO come up with little personal touches to let her know you’re thinking about her. Send random videos of the family dog doing something that always makes her smile. Figure out creative long-distance ways to share inside family jokes. Send care packages or good old-fashioned letters.
DON’T text him every five minutes to see how things are going. Try to hold off until at least every ten.
DO be prepared to participate in in-depth conversations at 12:30 a.m. on the one night you’re so exhausted you were planning to go to bed early. Even though she’s having fun on her new college adventure, there will still be those moments when she needs your comfort or advice—and she’ll need it NOW.
And whatever you do, DON’T listen to Owl City’s Vanilla Twilight! I know this is supposed to be a simple love song, but I it fits perfectly for a parent/child relationship as well. I know it’s tempting to click that play button down there, but step away from the blog. (If you simply can’t resist, however, make sure you have some tissues nearby.)
You will survive!