There is no getting around it. I am depressed. I have been depressed before and it seems to me that it takes a couple of different forms.
Classic depression: I have been the kind of depressed where you don’t want to go out of the house, or get dressed or sometimes even bathed, depressed.
Postpartum depression: Why wasn’t life like the Pampers Commercial depressed? And by the way…who knew your nipples could ever look like this depressed.
Anxious and Depressed: I have also had times in my life when I experienced panic attacks so serious when leaving the house that I couldn’t go to the grocery store and my hair started falling out.
Surgically Depressed: A few years ago I had a surgery that threw my body through a loop. Everything went well, but for the longest time afterwards I felt disconnected from life and had trouble focusing.
Postpartum (but not really) depression: Finally last year after finishing a degree that ruled my life for six years, I was left wondering “is that is?”
Now, my second child has moved out of the house and into the dorm. I feel like crying.
Don’t get me wrong: he is doing well. I am so happy that he has navigated the social structure of school, met some friends, and likes his classes and professors. He is chomping at the bit and wants to be on dean’s list even though he knows it is going to mean working hard.
I am so proud.
Yet I can’t stop crying.
And here is the thing, and maybe people have said this before, but I haven’t read it (maybe I read it and didn’t’ believe it) : It isn’t that I miss my baby and want him home, although I do miss him and I look forward to seeing him in a couple of weeks.
I think it’s that part of my life is coming to a close and there are no do-overs.
I will never get back the elementary years, or the middle school years.
I never took them to Disney or the Grand Canyon.
Oh sure. I can still do that.
But they will never believe in Santa again.
And they are happy and healthy and navigating the waters of young adulthood just fine; so I guess we must have done something right. Right?
I just am a little bit mournful over moments lost; a little guilty over things not done, or not done well enough to my thinking; and for facing a reality of the next stage of life.
Thank god there is Owen. He will get our undivided attention for the next two years.
I am sure he will thank his brother and sister for leaving him home. Alone. With us.