We drove Alex to San Francisco International Airport on Tuesday, sending her for a two-day layover with Kate in Chicago, then to Amsterdam for a year. We have no return date. Just the expectation of an experience of a lifetime. You know, no big deal. Except that it’s a year. And another continent (I’ve done another country before… this isn’t Canada folks). And no return flight for the holidays. And change.
For someone who is on an intimate relationship with her emotions, I have no idea what I was/am feeling. It’s a pride, wonderment, excitement, a tiny bit of sad, a teensy bit of apprehension, joy, wistfulness and melancholy combo platter. To tell you the truth, it made me want to throw up a little. On Monday night our house was parade of friends and relatives, and it was really loud. And happy.
On Tuesday morning, the drive to SF was quieter. We were early, so we had a coffee and looked at the travel guide. Took some pictures. And then it was time.
Here’s the deal. It’s not fair that we don’t get to watch the plane take off. That your last view is your daughter, walking through the security machine, with her arms raised, towards a uniformed officer. I have watched too much of Orange is the New Black to feel good about this.
There may have been a sob.
I turned to Steve and said, “this is a lot for a mama.” His response was, “What about that papa? It’s a lot for me, too.”
We spent the afternoon with his parents and sister, and when I came home, I had this photo from Kate.
So pretty much, she’s gonna be all right. As are we.