Sunday, April 19, 2009

Growing Pains Aren't Just for Kids

Friday afternoon, we dropped Hayley off at camp for the weekend. Her first away camp! And what's more, she didn't know a single soul there!

She was a little nervous, but not much. She just wanted to know that we would walk around with her a bit so she could get her bearings. And when it was time for us to go... she asked half-heartedly, "Do you have to?"


"Ok! Bye!"

And that was that. At least as far as Hayley was concerned.

As we drove away through impossibly beautiful farmland, I couldn't appreciate any of it. My stomach felt as if I'd just competed in a chili dog eating contest. I snapped at Emma without meaning to and refused a stop at Dairy Queen.

(The only thing that perked my interest was the cutest calf nibbling grass by the side of the road. I wanted to stop and pet it but Scott told me it was a bull, so no. Are baby bulls dangerous? I guess I don't want to find out the hard way.)

Scott figured out what was wrong with me before I did. Growing pains. I was letting go of my baby for the first time. Sure, I've been away from her before, but she's never spent the weekend with strangers.

Would she make friends?
Would she remember to take her meds?
Would she be ok?
Would she be homesick?

In a nutshell, I was a wreck. Not crying, but truly miserable.

Forty-five minutes later as we got back on the freeway, the stomach ache finally lifted. I knew she'd be just fine. She was already making friends as we left. (Emma and I spied on her from behind a very large oak.)

It hit me suddenly that this wasn't the first time I'd felt this way. Hayley's first day of kindergarten was much the same. I'd been so excited, so ready for her to start school. Then as she got in line behind her teacher, I started to cry. The more I tried to control myself, the harder I cried.

And the one disintegrating (probably had been through the wash) tissue I found deep in my jean shorts pocket was not up to the task of cleaning me up.

I cried for the entire three hours of school that day. I mean sobbed. I thought I'd been ready to let her go, but I wasn't.

Same thing now. She was ready. I wasn't.

We pick her up at noon today. Want to come over later and see the holes I put in the floorboards trying to get to her faster?

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