It's been a long week. I'm exhausted and 7:30 AM is going to come awfully fast (WHY oh WHY Muhlenberg do you not have graduation at, like noon?) but before I rest tonight, on the eve of your college graduation, there's a few things I have to say.
The tears will flow tomorrow, I knew that much, but I certainly didn't expect them to start tonight. Driving down the side street on route to Baccalaurate I suddenly had a flashback to move-in day of your freshman year. How TIRED we were at the ungodly hour of the morning (Muhl certainly likes to do things early, don't they?!) but as we snaked our way through the line of traffic on our way to Brown the staff and volunteers came up to the van, offering orange juice and refreshments and we got a small, but much needed, burst of energy.
The unloading itself was easy thanks to the volunteers who carried your belongings up. I was so proud and happy for your new experience yet I dreaded that way the clock kept ticking and before I knew it it would be time to say goodbye.
After we got things in order we headed down to the parent/student lunch. The food at Muhlenberg has been exceptional in terms of college cuisine, but I couldn't tell you very much about what I had that day. I sat with you and dad, trying to hold my emotions in, knowing that just after lunch we'd be saying "So long ..." and for the first time ever you'd be living away from home. Haha .. I remember pushing my food around to look like I was eating, and trying really hard to keep my stinging eyes from betraying me, letting you know how upset I was.
After an Oscar worthy job of seeing you (or should I say us) off Dad and I headed down 222 for the hour drive home. I don't recall exactly when the dam broke. I believe it was some time before we passed by Kutztown, when all of the sudden I began to sob. Dad, being dad, was like "What's wrong?!" I sniffled and composed myself and said "I just feel SOOO bad leaving her there. She can't have her car since it's freshman year and it's like we're ABANDONING her ... sniff sniff, nose blow." He laughed and made a comment along the lines that we weren't sending you to Siberia. I pouted because right then and there it might as well have been.
That first year passed quickly and it wasn't as bad as I originally thought, especially with you coming home every weekend. And sophomore, junior, and now senior year we WAY more easy to let you head off every fall to your home away from home.
Tomorrow emotions will well up inside of me once again, and not only because of how incredibly proud we all are of your accomlishment. Graduating with a B+ average when your a double major is like, WOW. And knowing our daughter has TWO degrees in English and Film Studies is the cherry on the most delectable of sundaes.
There will be a few tears shed because of those who are no longer with us, even though they show us in their own way. You know I especially mean your angel, Pappy. Wow. If he were here I can just imagine the sparkle in his eye when they announce your name. :)
Other bittersweet feelings will come into play because the end of your days at Muhlenberg have arrived and it's time to close that chapter in your book. We all have some awesome memories of your time there, from that first reception and signing day at President Helm's house, all the football games and shows, just walking around the beautiful campus, hearing that majestic clock tower chime, Premise Maid stops - LOL, and let's not forget the food, especially at the Red Door. Even dad is upset about that one. LOL
I know you're planning on being at home awhile but I anticipate going back to square one when you move onto your next "home." I'm not sure what will take you away but whether it's a job working as a PA on a movie set, intern at a TV studio, or whatever, I'll be feeling slightly melancholy again. That is, after all, a mother's perrogative ...
I luv you and way to go Kiki!