According to MC, all is going well at school. He likes his classes and his roommate. But when he called yesterday (out of the clear blue) I could tell he was lonely. He didn't have anything to do and since he hasn't figured out the bus schedule he's feeling trapped.
Apparently, his roommate (who is a sophomore - really? I would have thought they would have paired the freshmen together) went to New York for the weekend to visit his brother.
I am continually surprised about MC's reticence to meet new people. I mean, I get it. I'm that way. But when he was small we called him the "Mayor" of our street. This kid was so outgoing. He'd stand at the edge of the driveway and talk to anyone that walked by. And when new people would move in (it was a new neighborhood - we ALWAYS had new people moving in) he would introduce himself and then proceed to tell them about every person and animal on the street. He would hug anyone, if I'd let him. Seriously.
Then he was just like his father. He didn't know a stranger. Now? Now he's just like me. Not wanting to step out of my comfort zone. I wish I knew when/how that switch happened.
It must be harder these days for college kids (hell, for anyone really) to meet new people what with the technology we have now. From what I can gather, all the kids have televisions and computers in their dorms - so where is the incentive or the necessity to get out? To mix and mingle with other real life humans.
When I talked to him yesterday afternoon, he hadn't left his dorm room all day. And had no real plans to do so.
Of course, I was concerned. I don't want him to be lonely up there in the mountains. I want him to be happy, with friends, and having a good time.
A friend at work was telling me about her sister-in-law. She just sent her only child to college to live in a dorm. Twenty minutes away.
Apparently, this woman hasn't stopped crying since they dropped her off. TWENTY MINUTES AWAY. As a result, after only a week or so the girl is thinking about moving home and commuting to college.
This made me very sad. Sad for the mother - because I understand, in a way. But sadder for the girl. Because she is feeling guilty. And that's the last thing she should be feeling. At this point, she should be reveling in her independence. Meeting new people and learning new things.
This is the whole purpose of raising our kids - for them to leave us. To stand on their own two feet. To become adults.
As much as we don't want to let them go and we will always worry about them; this is the way it is supposed to happen.
As upsetting as it is to think that MC was lonely this weekend, I also know that this will push him out of his comfort zone eventually. And he will find new friends. And he will begin to build the life he is meant to have. And I will be proud.
And for that other mom and child? Well, for them I will pray. Pray that the mother sees that her actions aren't helping her child that they are, in fact, hindering her child. And that her child will spread her wings and fly. And make her mother proud.
As for us? We are still figuring out our new normal. Hubby continues to make too much food - food that will not get eaten before it goes bad. I'm realizing just how much laundry one extra person can generate and, dare I say it, enjoying the fact that laundry isn't an all weekend project anymore.