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Dept. of Children Hold Our Hearts

Goodbye. Don't Forget the Cow Horns.

So today my son, my beautiful, infuriating, brilliant boy young man, came over and moved out most of his things. The bed we bought him is gone, destined for storage space in the basement of his new apartment. The books we bought him, all the books of folk and fairy tales, the dinosaur books and books about Kurosawa and Miyazaki, are packed up and gone. All his CDs are gone (with mine extracted prior to departure.) Most of his musical instruments are gone, too.

What lies in his future? I've got no idea. He's learning about money as fast as crappy financial decisions and overspending can teach him. He's learning about being someone else's support, instead of being someone else's burden, and I'm hoping the lesson doesn't drain him; hoping it actually gives him strength and joy. He's going to tackle his own demons, delight in his own victories in his own livingroom, his own kitchen and ... not ours. Not mine. Not the one that used to be his.

He hasn't been living here for a while. Not really; he's been at his girlfriend's place, dropping by here occasionally to decompress when life as an adult threatened to overwhelm him. (He's always been younger than he needed to be in this world; our fault, my fault) He can always come back, but now he'll be visiting.

I'm so relieved.  I'm so angry it didn't happen earlier. I'm so shocked it's happening so soon. I'm so scared.

He'll do fine. Or he won't. But it's his call, not ours.

My son, my son, oh Absalom, my son. 

Win, little one. You're no longer little and you haven't been for a long time. Beat the world. Be magnificent.

Comments

( 12 comments — Leave a comment )
sensiblecat
May. 22nd, 2011 11:20 am (UTC)
That was beautiful. My son is at university now, just coming to the end of a very successful first year. He hasn't always had an easy life, especially where his health is concerned, so we're delighted and relieved that things are going so well for him. It's also nice that, as yet, he still does live here some of the time. But I can very much relate to your feelings and imagine being in the same place in a few years' time.

How old is your son?
kaffyr
May. 22nd, 2011 03:18 pm (UTC)
Thank you; it's always good to know other parents on lj. I'm tickled for your son's success!

As for mine, he's 26. He made two quick attempts at college, dropped out, spent most of the next few years being in a band and trying to break into acting, since he has considerable gifts in both directions. He didn't really work hard at finding more than sporadic work. Then he met his current girlfriend and got serious about finding a job. It's in a university post office, and not where he wants to end up, but he blossomed into the responsibility. Now he's talking about taking an English lit course this summer, and about the possibility of going back to school sometime in the next couple of years, to study to be a teacher.
viomisehunt
May. 22nd, 2011 07:08 pm (UTC)
Welcome to the Mummy of grown folks world. :) The comfort is, as they grow older and have families, their children will grow into teenagers and young adults as well.

By the way-- your son managed to move out all of his things in one go? How did you manage that? Mine left two months ago and I swear comes back and pick ups two shirts at a time.
kaffyr
May. 22nd, 2011 10:00 pm (UTC)
Yup - another stage in life!

He's moved about 85 percent of his stuff out; his stuffed animal collection is packed up, but not gone, and one final box of magazines, but other than that - yes, he moved out pretty completely. It was a bit of a surprise to his dad, I think!
mjlayman
May. 22nd, 2011 08:55 pm (UTC)
:::sniff:::
kaffyr
May. 22nd, 2011 10:01 pm (UTC)
There's a bit of that being done around here.
gerisullivan
May. 22nd, 2011 09:16 pm (UTC)
So long anticipated and long known, but suddenly so very real.

Beautiful post, highlighting as it does the full-spectrum emotion that so often accompanies big life events. Thank you.
kaffyr
May. 22nd, 2011 10:02 pm (UTC)
At my age, I should know that it's always going to be a shock, no matter how much we may prepare, or yearn, for it. Thanks for you words, dear.
apostle_of_eris
May. 22nd, 2011 11:46 pm (UTC)
more cow horn!
kaffyr
May. 23rd, 2011 02:33 am (UTC)
*snrt*

He actually has had a pair of mounted cow horns hanging on his wall for a few years. The damned things are sharp, and I punctured myself on them when he first found them, and again when they came off the wall. They'll be a conversation starter at his new place.
rmjwell
May. 24th, 2011 06:23 am (UTC)
Come November, I'm going to be father to twins. Reading this is a good reminder that I'm not raising children, I'm helping a couple of humans to be fully aware, functioning adults.
kaffyr
May. 26th, 2011 01:53 am (UTC)
I had meant to tell you well before this how delighted I was to hear that news! Congratulations, my friend; may you and everyone in your family enter parenthood knowing that you will surround your children - those precious new humans - with love, and will receive more than you ever imagined in return!
( 12 comments — Leave a comment )

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