Elizabeth started high school today. I walked to the bus stop with her. Because I wanted to, not because she needed me to. This is how it goes. Each milestone a little different. A little more profound. For weeks I have been imagining her in high school. Walking the halls. Figuring things out. Finding her people. Being herself and changing her people for good. Her people being themselves and changing her for good. What a great, fun, exciting, anxious, scary, important time. She stepped onto the bus and into another world.
I walked back up the hill and into another world of my own. As I walked up the hill listening to the birds and to Simone calling down from the deck, it hit me. This is the home-base Elizabeth will return to. But it is not where she will live. She will live “out there”. She will come back to here. Where the birds chirp and the dog greets and the little sister hugs. Where she can recharge, recuperate, gather some guidance and advice (to be used or not), rest. This is the place she will be anxious to leave once she is finished recharging. And anxious to return to when she gets homesick or just needs some home-love. It is also the place that her family will sit and miss her and wonder what she is up to. And the place where we will encourage her to get back out there to experience and influence the world and the people in it.