Saturday, October 6, 2012

Off to College

August began with the Wedding in the Pasture, proceeded immediately with a  Florida road trip, and ended with my youngest going off to college for the first time. The night before the big move. Sam told us to be ready at 7:00 am, and I thought, "yea, right."  Morning came and it was a bit confusing to see my son awake with bright alertness and  energy as he packed up his car with surround-sound equipment, computers, video gaming gadgets and such. This is really weird, I thought. Mornings with him are usually slow and groggy.  Instead, he kept urging us to hurry up in an exasperated voice as I sipped my coffee and watched him work around me. A  few skateboards and frisbee golf discs were rounded up. Then I marveled that I didn't have to remind him to pack clean undies and toiletries. As I watched him stuff socks and shampoo bottles into a duffle bag I thought,  "Hmmmmm, he must be serious about this college thing?". With that, I shook off the morning stupor and packed up some Nutella, Peanut Butter, bread, butter knife and three 12 packs of sodas, bedding and towels into a couple clothes baskets and hauled them to my car.
The sky was one of those bluest of blue skies on an amazing summer morning. So, rare in Ohio.

Hurry up! Car packed mostly with electronics
8:30 am last pose with Dad
An hour and half later, we pulled into the parking lot at Wright State University and was met with an army of volunteers in golf carts, who worked in systematic machine-like order.  Sam was sent by a volunteer to get his dorm key and we parents were told to load the golf cart. Olin and I climbed into the cart with the volunteer and she whisked us into a long caravan of overloaded carts off to the dormitories in the woods. When we arrived at Hickory Hall more student volunteers grabbed all of our stuff and quickly carried it up two flights of stairs into Sam's room were he was waiting. Only 40 minutes passed from the time we arrived to setting down the last electronic piece on his room floor. Sam introduced himself and us to his two new roommates and their parents. We had all arrived at the same time. The boys seemed to have a lot in common: guitars, skate boards, and video gaming. 
Sam's new home for the next 9 months.
Hickory Hall in The Woods
Heading home to an empty house.

I made Sam's bed for him and then realized, I had to say goodbye and let him settle in with the two strangers he will be living with. I made him walk outside to say goodbye to me.  I had expected more stress, more of an event, more of something. Yet, it all went so fast, so smoothly, and naturally. Olin had never seen the campus, so he and I walked around the campus and then had lunch in the student union. (Interesting fact about WSU is that it's the only university in the entire country that is 100% handicap accessible. The environment is very positive as we watched many severely handicapped people navigate their way around without an assistant. Now that's inspiring!)
We headed home and both of us stared blankly ahead at the freeway. And it wasn't even 1:30 in the afternoon when we arrived home to a quiet house. 


  1. Bittersweet I am sure, but at least it is close to home...

  2. It does sound like a great place for him to be learning over the next four years. I'm sure it is an adjustment to being empty nesters at least temporarily. My sister sent her youngest of two off to college this past September and she's been in a bit of a funk about it all. It is just a shame they grow up so quickly!

    Wishing your son a successful freshman year!


  3. My son has never forgotten his first day at oollege. His sister was still at home and after seeing off her brother, we went to the paint store and bought what we needed to remodel his room so she could move into it.
    For some insane reason he had to return home (school was only an hour away) and caught us mid-redecoration. He never has forgiven us.

    1. oh, this made me crack up. poor kid. I can't just see you guys with rollers and brushes in hand as walk in. Oh, so funny!