Next week both of my daughters will be a plane ride away for the first time. If you follow this blog you know that my oldest is now a college graduate and my youngest is about to start her junior year. So it has been a while since both girls were living at home, but with one in Boston and one in NYC, it was comforting to know that both places were relatively easy to drive to. Flying to Boston could be a nice alternative, but after doing it a few times, I didn't mind the 6-7 hour drive at all. As you have also heard me say before, I love being the mom of adult kids and seeing how their lives evolve. They have both done amazing things in their college careers and have impressed me countless times with how independent they are and how well they navigate the cities they live in or any city (or country) they travel to. I am very used to not seeing them every day, but could typically manage visits every couple of months or sometimes more often than that. The girls made good use of the train between Boston and NYC as well and were able to see each other fairly easily when they had time. I am thrilled that they remain so close. It was clear when they were much younger that they would always be best friends.💗
This is a bittersweet time. I am so proud of both of my daughters and so excited for these next chapters they are about to begin. Realizing that these chapters will take them places which are no longer a drive away is a little bit sad, but if you follow this blog, you also know that getting on a plane is a very routine thing for me and while it takes a little more planning, I will still be able to visit both of them. I am very confident that they both have the skills they need to succeed which makes transitions like these much less worrisome. As a parent, there is no way not to worry a little about your kids even when they are adults, but when you have witnessed them be responsible and be able to take care of themselves, it is extremely reassuring. I know they will be fine and most certainly don't need me or my parents anymore, at least not in the same ways they used to. This means we did our job well! I was so fortunate to have the help and support of my parents while raising my daughters as a single working mom, and I think we are a good example of how something other than the traditional nuclear family can work very well There are many variations of family units, so there is not one right or wrong way to raise kids. However, it is critical to ensure: love, support, values, guidance, boundaries and then ultimately freedom. With this, you can raise kind, responsible humans!
So, off they go! On the almost eve of her 22nd birthday, Danielle packed her car to the brim and is headed west! She will be in Iowa for the next two years with her boyfriend. They both have great jobs and will be exploring a new place together. I am so proud of her for taking the leap into the unknown. My city girl has a strong desire to experience living in different regions of this country, and while I think the midwest will not go beyond these two years, hopefully she will enjoy it. My guess is she will ultimately want to call the Northeast home again at some point in future, but we'll see...🤷🏻♀️ Looking forward to doing the 15 hour road trip (just this one time 😉) in a couple of weeks to bring her everything she could not fit in her very skillfully packed MINI Cooper!
Then on Monday (which is Danielle's 22nd birthday), I will drive Kayla to the airport in NYC to leave for her semester abroad in London at NYU's fashion program. She will then celebrate her 20th birthday one week later, no doubt in some fabulous place with her friends.🎊 This was her first choice program, so she is very excited, and I am so excited for her! She will be able to explore a new country and travel to others on the weekends. We have traveled to several countries in Europe, so I know she is comfortable navigating her way around, which makes the transition easier for all of us. Also, it's just a semester, and I will take the "trip across the pond" ✈️ in October for a long weekend which will be a lot of fun. Danielle will get to visit her first in just a few weeks before she starts her job. The sisters will "Do London"!!🇬🇧
I may sound like a broken record at times going on about how much I enjoy this phase of parenting. I will miss my daughters, but I know they are fine, and they are living their lives to the fullest which is exactly what a mother wants to see. My busy career still occupies a lot of my time, and while it was a challenge to balance it all over the years, it is something I still have now as my kids move on. I have also been fortunate enough to find my passion with ballroom dance which fills a wonderful space in my life. Being busy and having things to do as well as some wonderful friends and my family nearby, makes all the difference in the world. My life is very full, and while my daughters have the biggest piece of my heart always, I am so happy to watch them leave the nest and truly soar!
My advice: raise them right and let them go...they will always find their way back, and you will have an amazing relationship with your adult kids😊