Tonight feels very surreal and unsettling to me. It's the last night that our family will live in this house as a family full-time. Tomorrow we take Katie to college. Of course, she'll come back for holidays and summer vacation and possibly even some long weekends, but never again will the four of us live together in the same way that we have for the last 18 years. I have such a mix of emotions running through my heart and mind, that I can't really pin any one down. I'm so proud of her, I'm excited for her to begin this new journey, I'm worried about how she'll adjust, I'm sad that I won't be with her every day, I'm regretting all the things I've screwed up as her mom, moments of her childhood are flashing through my brain, I'm trying to focus on all the last minute things we need to do before we leave tomorrow. I'm overwhelmed and emotionally wrung out.
Right now Katie has four friends over and they are eating pizza and laughing and having a great time. And tomorrow that will all be over. All that comfort and familiarity will be gone and she will have to find her way all over again. It's sad and a little scary. I just want her to be happy. And I worry about her. It's going to be so weird to drop her off in an unfamiliar place, with unfamiliar people and just leave. How can my job as her 24/7 parent be over? I want to continue to protect her and guide her and help her weather life's ups and downs. I'm not ready to let her go. But I have to. And it hurts.