Anticipation building upon new clothes, new bedding, new addresses

and soon new friends.

Heartache fed by empty rooms, empty pockets and empty nest.

This transitional time of year that reeks of adventure and fear,

Hope and sadness,

Excitement and pride.

I have sat across the table this past week from incoming middle schoolers, High School & College Freshman and soon to be empty nesters.

The subject of conversation is all the same, the sentiments are not.

You are supposed to be excited and happy for this new season;

This great adventure!

This is where the stages of life begin to play out as our race is determined and our roles are defined.

Generations are intertwined as we let the realization sink in –

Our years are not counted from January to December,

 August to June more accurately measure the rapidly changing seasons.

“Could that chubby legged toddler really be the lovely college student before me?”

Time really must fly.

Upon it’s wings children enter adulthood.

Babies leave the nest.

And all are transformed into soaring eagles.

Into the unknown we carry like a security blanket, memories of childhood foolishness,

Parental tough love, and all the friendships forged along the way.

If we are wise – Student and parent alike – we will draw them out, at the appropriate time,

enhancing the new adventure built upon so sweet a foundation.

In three or four years, we will meet here again,

The tears will be there, but they will not compare to the

knowledge and pride that only comes

when we are brave enough

to embark

Into the Unknown!