Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Don't Worry, Be Happy

She is packing the last few things, saying her last good-byes to her friends (and boyfriend) and shedding a few tears in between. And while she really wanted to go away to school, and Miami was her first choice, she's having major angst because it's so far from home. She is a bit shy and reserved -- and hates change -- so the prospect of leaving home is not an easy one for her.

August has been a difficult month for all of us, knowing we're in countdown mode -- until our only child leaves for college. I realized the worst part of having an only child is the leaving. For most families, there are phases -- the first child goes, but there's a delay until the others leave and you face the empty nest. With an only child, it all happens at once.

It was only yesterday that she looked like the picture above and tomorrow she's leaving.

I've given her my few "words of advice" before she goes. I tried to keep it short. Knowing her problems with change, I said she should "Be open." Be open to trying new things, listening to how others do things and seeing other ways to look at the world. Her school has a nice mix of people from all over, including a good sized international population, so she can experience many new ideas. But I also cautioned that it's important for her to "Be yourself." For her to feel comfortable enough with herself, to feel secure with who she is that she doesn't get caught up in the crowd and do something that's not her. I said that it's OK to say no, that's not for me. And finally, I added that she's in college and that I want her to study and work hard. But this is also the best time of her life, so she should just remember: Don't worry, be happy.

And I then played a video of Bobby McFerrin, Don't Worry, Be Happy:

Be open. Be yourself. And don't worry, be happy. I suppose that's all there is to say. I guess she's ready to go.

1 comment:

quakerdave said...

Been there.

Done that.

Hard day, isn't it?