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Letting go

October 19th, 2007

My daughter moved away to college this fall into the dorms at UCLA. While the school is only 1 hour away by car (without traffic congestion), life without her at home has been an adjustment.

Whether your child is one month old or 17 years old, the day will inevitably come when he will move away from home.

Do you ask your collegian to call you once a week? Twice a week? Do you expect them to come home once a month? Twice a month?

When my son started college 2 years ago, I did not ask him to call home at any particular intervals because I know he will forget and then I will worry. I left it up to him if he would call home at all.

What ended up happening was that he would call me when he had down time while walking in between classes, or late at night when he was walking back to his dorm. And he would end our conversation abruptly as soon as he reaches his destination.

At first, I felt a bit offended. ‘Oh, you only call me when you have nothing better to do.’

You mean his mother is not the person on top of his mind all the time? You mean he is not always thinking about me?

Well, I had to get out of my dream world and get over it. As a mom, I will always be thinking about him and will be willing to put down everything I am doing to talk to him. But can I expect a teenager to reciprocate that feeling towards his mother? It would be awfully unnatural if he did!

Now my freshman daughter is following the same pattern.

So I accept whatever my grown children give to me in terms of their time. Sometimes my daughter would call me and talk for barely a minute. “Bye, mom, I have another call!”

Bye, dear. I’m glad you have a life.

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  1. […] my daughter calls me from college, I drop everything to talk to her! “Oh no, I’m not busy at all. […]


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