He's moved... again!
What I hadn't been prepared for was how I would feel when I got back home and he was just... gone. There's something to be said for going through the actual moving out process. I didn't, so it was sort of shocking and unsettling when I got back home and he wasn't there.
Fortunately he doesn't live very far away and we see him fairly often. But it's different. Even when he comes to visit it's not the same as when he lived at home. When he comes home now he's just passing through. He's a pretty happy guy most of the time. Resilient in fact. Seeing that, knowing that, I was able to put my own scary feelings of loss behind me.
It was no different than when he first walked (ran) and crashed into things when he was ten months old. Or, when he finally got finished with driver's training and drove. Alone. At night. To go hang out at a friend's house. New phases and stages of his life. A time to let go, as all parents do as their children grow up, watching him, proudly, move on with his life.
Now we have a new milestone. He and his girlfriend of four years have moved in together. I find myself exchanging anecdotes about his habits, his likes and dislikes with her. It's new this feeling of putting my son's well-being into another woman's hands, but it feels right. More importantly, he's still happy. Still resilient.
Aside from this move, he's got some pretty big things happening in his life over the next year. I'm a Mom. I worry, but I'm also smiling and genuinely happy, but still a little misty too. They grow up so fast...