Last night my husband and I were watching TV. A Target commercial came on and I felt myself wanting to tear up. What? It was a really cute back to school ad, with happy kids and parents buying colored pencils, notebooks, and backpacks.
It hit me. I don’t have any more “Back to Schools.” Mackenzie graduated college three years ago and has been living and working in the city. Talee graduated college this past June and works at a “big girl job,” as she calls it.
No more school days.
Even when the girls were in college, and we no longer did the traditional K-12 back to school shopping, I still had a back-to-school-time-of-year. Shopping for their dorms or houses, getting them some clothes and makeup, and maybe a notebook or two.
Mackenzie, Talee, and I have great memories of back to school shopping. The girls have often told me that their favorite part — more than buying new outfits — was going to Target or an office store to get their supplies. There’s something about clean, fresh paper, sharp pencils, clean erasers, and folders that don’t have anything written on them yet.
A fresh start.
Last September when Talee started her senior year of college, I’m surprised I didn’t think about it being my very last back to school year. Not that I would’ve done anything differently, it just didn’t cross my mind. And it’s important to me. One of those things you think will always be there.
This fall Talee will be moving out to be closer to work. It’ll be fun to shop with her for plates, silverware, pots and pans, and towels. I guess that’ll be my version of back to school.
My husband and I will become empty nesters again, and that’s bittersweet. I’m proud to watch my daughters become independent and grow in their careers and adult lives. But I miss their younger days. I miss driving them to school, picking them up, making lunches, and helping with homework.
Those days are gone and that’s sad to me. But I’m thankful I treasured those moments and cherish those memories. A new season is about to start and we have to move on.
A new beginning.
Maybe the next time Mackenzie and Talee are home together, we’ll go to Target or the office store and get some new pens, sticky notes, and journals. They’ll never be too old for that. Neither will I.
First image courtesy of here
Second image courtesy of here
Third image courtesy of here