Sending my Daughter to College
I have the dubious joy of sending my first-born daughter off to college, out of state, this fall. I have such mixed emotions about it. I am so proud of her and all the accomplishments, she received a wonderful scholarship and will be able to attend a small, private school with very little of my money. Oh, and you’ll be entering as a Junior!!!! Chile, Yes Lord. Yet, I already feel the ache in my heart as she takes this next step toward adulthood. It seems like yesterday she was sitting in my lap tangling the comb in my hair, puckering her lips out for continuous kisses on the lips. I can’t help but to be frightened due the recent events across the nation this week. However, that’s another post!!!!
When she was only eight months old, she took her very first steps, three in number, I think. But the most poignant part of the memory was that she was walking away from me. I was dumbstruck and awestruck, that these very first steps of hers were away from her mama, and all I could think at that moment was that this was just the beginning of walking away. Didn’t she know that she should have taken those steps towards me, not away from me? But, that’s how we evolve. Her whole life has been a series of walking away, not in a mean or disrespectful fashion, but just walking away, finding her own answers to some of life’s really big questions, coming back and bouncing them off me, but then going away again to test her new thoughts and ideas out in that great big world. I’ve always admired her inquisitive stubbornness. But always speaking her mind and standing up for what she believes in.
She and I have a remarkable relationship and I am pretty confident that by her mid-twenties, she will consider me one of her friends, but I just wonder if there are no other mothers out there, saying good-bye to that seventeen, eighteen, or nineteen-year-old child and what those moms are feeling? How do you get through the emotions of this very first child leaving home? How do keep from clinging on to them and saying, “Don’t leave! You still need me!” How do you tell her all that you hope and wish for her as she walks into that dorm, out of your house, and so far from your home? Don’t get me wrong, she’s still going.
Lord, Help me.
I thought I’d write her a Dear Daughter letter: LOL.
OK, look!!! So it’s almost time to go. I mean you’re excited and believe me I get it. So am I. I mean, we’ve already accumulated quite a wardrobe featuring your college mascot I guess we have to follow through with this, right? Lol
Now as your mother I know; I’ve written you several letter offering up some pearls of wisdom. Those things I’ve repeated daily over the past 18 years. You know those things that make your eyes roll, (of course when I’m not looking) We all know MAMA don’t play that. Things like, “Listen to your gut-if it doesn’t feel right -it ain’t right! and “It’s okay to make mistakes- just don’t make those really stupid mistakes, that can change your life.
My advice to you? Have fun. Enjoy every moment. These will the best years of your life. I promise you. However, please don’t flunk out the first year!!!! We won’t even speak that into existence!!! Success isn’t an option in our home, it’s a must!!!
Now you were the best thing that ever happen to me at 19 years old. Children bring you so much joy! However, please wait about 10 to 18 years to find your joy in children, lol
Here you go, “Didn’t you meet Dad at 23??? Um, yes I did. I couldn’t imagine life without him. However, I do imagine sometimes wandering around Morocco at 23, with a size 6 frame living in a Villa, eating Couscous with Harvest Vegetables. Does that put things in perspective for you? LOL . I guess my advice then is this: Your college years and your 20s are the only time in your life you might be free to be alone with yourself, so take advantage of them. Be selfish. Take risks! That doesn’t mean you can’t have a Boo Thang, Lol
On second thought, beware of all men. Also? Don’t ever have sex.
OK, that’s unrealistic. I tried it!!!! I know that eventually you will have sex, so you should know some things:
- If he doesn’t like you before sex, he won’t like you after sex. Now, that’s not a fact. However, I did hear it through the grapevine.
- Birth control pills can prevent pregnancy, but they don’t prevent some of those disgusting STD…..and regrets
- Don’t have unprotected sex until after you are married. Just my opinion.
UGH, just don’t ever have sex, I changed my mind. Lol
The parties!!! They’ll be so much fun, but you must be very careful. Always have three ways to get home. Enough money for a cab or bus fare; if someone isn’t ready to go home when you are. I prefer the notion of- We came together, we stay together , we leave together!!!! That’s the truth. I also know you’re firm on not drinking and convinced you won’t ever take a sip of anything with alcohol. I praise you if this is the case. However, if temptation ever presents itself to you, here are some rules to follow.
Surround yourself with people you trust — which is a good rule of thumb in any situation — but especially if you decide to have some cocktails. Drawing a mustache on your friend’s face is kind of funny; rape is not. Drinking while driving is not. Drinking while texting is not….we’ll talk about that later.
Stay away from Sex on the Beach!! Both Kinds. It was this one time….wait never mind this isn’t about me. Side Eye.
Mama know she didn’t raise a fool, but to be completely sure let me say this:
Seriously, regardless of whether you decide to drink or not , be aware of your “DAMN” — surroundings, of your friends, of yourself. Take your screen down every once in a while and live in the moment. It will not only help you appreciate your life, it just might save it. Pay Attention!!!! Remember, If it don’t feel right it ain’t right!!! I’m telling you the truth child. I hope I haven’t scared you, well just a little. Because the World is real out there!!! Let me tell you the truth. Alcohol, controlled substances, sex – you will have new opportunities – make choices in alignment with your character and your life will not take unexpected detours. Social responsibility rests with you.
It has been my duty to protect you and keep you safe for the last 18 years. I will never stop being your mom, even when I’m long gone!! I will always be here when you need me.
Always there to comfort and console you. No matter what!!
You are a brilliant young woman and your potential is literally limitless. You have made the decision to go into the medical field and give back tremendously to this world. I am so proud of your decisions and hard work that have brought you to this point in your life. Do not ever underestimate your potential. I know it sounds cliché and very much like “something your mom would say” but it is true. If you want something bad enough, there should be nothing to stop you. And never, never, let someone try to sell you short and tell you that you can’t! Ever! I mean that!!!! The Six Pillars of Character are not just words for a wall or to memorize – they are a “go-to” code of principles that are an exceptional tool as a guide in how to live life. Use them as a guide when you are making decisions. They are more important to you now than any other time in your life. And in this I speak from experience.
Everyone gets duped at some time or another. Be aware of people that might take advantage of your friendship to hurt someone else, or to further some personal hidden agenda. Again, you are so sharp that I know you can see through a lot of this, but please be careful and don’t let anyone take advantage of you.
The rest of your life will not be the next four years – but the next four years will have a significant impact on the rest of your life as you develop your own network of friends – and credentials – that will guide the path in store for you. Only you can write your autobiography – and these first 18 years will be a very short Chapter 1 in comparison to what you start writing from this point forward.
The rest of your life will not be the next four years – but the next four years will have a significant impact on the rest of your life. So work hard, dream big, make good decisions – and have fun! Let your values, your faith, and your character guide you and never doubt that your dad and I will always love you and be proud of you.
You are a woman of strong and growing faith. Continue your faith journey in ways that allow you to grow – you know how much your dad and I love you – God loves you more – believe it!
Work hard, dream big, make good decisions – and have fun!
Know my joy in this moment for you.
Keep the Faith
Love you Girl!!!!