It finally arrived. It was an inevitable milestone, and I’m not really all that surprised by it. The oldest kid has decided it’s time to fledge the nest. She’s moving this weekend. There are boxes stacked in her bedroom, and she’s looking for a truck to borrow to handle her bedroom furniture. There were various options discussed, but I’m most pleased by the one she settled on: she’s moving in with biological dad – my ex.
No, I’m not angry or upset as many would assume I would be. Frankly, I think it’s the best possible choice if she’s hell-bent on moving – and she is. It was that or try to find an apartment that would take her and her dog. Or, she could move in with a friend, and said friend’s boyfriend. Really, given all the options, this is my preference most certainly.
It’s one of those quintessential moments in the lives of kids and parents. I remember the day that I moved – the first time. I moved into the Tri Delta sorority house at the University of Utah. I was only 20 minutes from home, and given that the house closed for the summer, it was only a temporary deal. All I took were some clothes and personal items (jewelry, make up, an alarm clock). Despite the glorified summer camp experience I thought it would be, my mother cried like I was leaving for darkest Africa. I can assure you, I wasn’t anywhere near as emotional.
Six months later I was home. Six months after that, I needed to move out again, for the sake of everyone’s mental health. Thus, at the age of 20, I left home and I never went back. I had a series of apartments and roommates, sometimes lived alone, but never regretted being on my own.
My daughter is a lot like me. I don’t think she’ll shed many tears over this move. I’m pretty sure she’ll come back home at least once. I know I won’t cry over her leaving, because much like my first move, it most likely won’t be final, and I know she’s going to be in a safe location. I will be sad to lose the dog, but her dad won’t be sorry to see it leave. He just discovered this morning that the dog has chewed through the cords on both vacuum cleaners.
And the fact that she’s moving in with my ex? Well, they’ve both got a lot to learn about each other, and I may actually start a pool as to who bails out first. Okay – that’s a joke. Mostly. What can I say? They think it’s a good idea, and as they are both of legal age, I really have no room to tell either of them what to do. I don’t have a whole lot to say about it, and neither one of them is very inclined to listen to me anyway, so it all works out in the end.
The biggest problem is not so much her moving out, it’s that within five minutes of her leaving, her younger sister is going to want me to move all her stuff into her big sister’s bigger bedroom. That being the case, I’ll turn the smaller bedroom into a craft room, then I can finish cleaning my office and feel that my space and time have been wisely used.
I’ll post the pictures when I get it all done, mostly because I know there are those who doubt I’ll ever get around to it.