It's been a long and emotionally draining month since I've last updated. And honestly, it feels a lot longer. Adjusting to having Katie away at college has been more difficult than I would have thought - and not in the ways I was expecting. Getting used to her being gone actually happened within the first couple of weeks. The more difficult part for me has been helping her through the normal ups and downs of her adjustment while being so far away. Let me start by saying that Katie is doing amazingly well. She is happy at the college she chose, she has made lots of friends, has joined a few organizations and has jumped into them with both feet. No surprise there! She has handled all the little "problems" that have crept up with maturity, grace and a sense of responsibility. I couldn't be prouder.
So why has it been so emotionally draining? Because I can't stop worrying and obsessing about all those little "problems" that creep up. When she calls to talk to me about them (for which I am eternally grateful. And Katie, if you are reading this, please do not think I don't want you to continue to share your ups and downs with me), I then worry about whatever it is that is going on. It is so hard not to see her every day so that I can gauge by her demeanor, attitude, or by simply asking her how it's going. And, of course, the next time we talk/text everything has worked out and the problem is long over. But, I've still been thinking about it. To be fair, I figured this out fairly quickly and it's not so much of a problem now but it has contributed to this feeling of being completely drained and overwhelmed.
It didn't help that during one of the most trying times, Geoff was away on business for TWO WEEKS - in Europe. So while we did talk on the phone a few times, I couldn't really get into the whole emotional mess during a transatlantic phone call. Those were a difficult two weeks.
Thankfully, I am beginning to feel a whole lot better. I think I have a handle on all of this and as Katie moves forward in her first semester at college, there are fewer and fewer adjustments to be made. And she truly is handling everything so well, that I really don't have anything to worry about. It just took a little while to get to this point. What I've learned from all of this is that it's not only the students who have to adjust to college life. Parents do, too. And in ways I wasn't expecting.