And Now We Know

And Now We Know

College Decisions

My last post here was six long weeks ago. And in that six weeks, everything has changed, just as I knew it would. It all really began many months ago when the college application process began. Heck, if you want to get right down to it, the time we started talking seriously about college options was back when my daughter and husband starting plotting and planning their college tours which was last spring. No wonder it feels like a long road. It’s been nearly a year! Not to mention all the thought and consideration and planning that came even before that. I guess in a nutshell, my daughter has worked her whole life for this moment. The gravity of that has felt, at times, overwhelming.

I’m not sure I even have the words to describe how it feels now, having that weight lifted. I can only tell you that it feels like a big huge relief. For her, for me, for all of us.  So, yes, she’s made her final decision. My girl is bound for Washington DC this fall, enrolled at American University in the School of International Service. As for what my body just did as I typed that out, I don’t know. But, I felt it in every cell.  I’ve got a mash up of emotions that I have never felt. Part butterfly, part bat, part prehistoric bird, these visceral sensations have replaced all of the anxiety and stress of the Great Unknown of a few weeks ago.  Because  now, I know. And that is a whole different kind of experience. One where I feel energized and excited about her grand adventure at college, one where I burst out crying without warning, one where I can envision her growing and thriving in her new surroundings and one where I simply cannot imagine this house without her. And the crying starts again.

There’s so much I’ve learned over the last year. So much I could talk about. So much I could share. But for now, I just wanted to get it on record that we’ve made it to this point; standing… singing…sobbing…celebrating at the threshold where life as we have always known it will be forever changed.

From here, I don’t know how I’ll do it. One foot in front of the other, I guess. And lots of tissues for the journey.

College Bound by Tracey Clark

  • Adrienne low
    Posted at 23:09h, 24 April Reply

    I’ve been quietly watching from the sidelines. We are at the very beginning of the process. Appreciate your insights and I am so happy for your daughter.

  • Kirsten Dominguez
    Posted at 23:39h, 24 April Reply

    Love you to pieces Tracey! You are going to go crazy with pride and joy! <3

  • Gail
    Posted at 15:04h, 25 April Reply

    Hello Tracey:
    Congratulations on your dughter’s decision!
    You and and I met last year at the BPC Play event and since then I have not only read your blog but have been on the same journey with my oldest son. He will be leaving SoCal and heading to Dartmouth. like you, this has been such a wonderfully emotional year. We have, as moms, done our job right. As for me, my mantra for the year, which I thank you for, has been : Cheering with pom poms in one hand and tissues in the other. It will be hard, but we are so privileged to be able to be moms to our children as they write this next chapter in their story. Thank you!

    • wren_beth
      Posted at 15:41h, 07 May Reply

      HI All,

      I’ve been watching as well, with my son going through the finding a college/being a senior process. He’s headed to Massachusetts, which means he’s still somewhat close. But I will be here in VT, 2 miles from Dartmouth. If your son needs anything, Gail, just give a shout out. I’ll be glad to help in any way. So happy & sad for all of us. What a journey it’s been!

  • Kathryn S.
    Posted at 03:55h, 26 April Reply

    Hi Tracey. This is such a lovely post. First, congratulations to your daughter and your whole family on making it to this point in the road. It is a huge milestone for all of you. Your words really spoke to my heart. You have a way of capturing the feelings of and experiences of motherhood that is eloquent and honest and beautiful and emotional. Motherhood is so often a mash up of emotions that we have never felt. My daughter and I are at an earlier stage in the road; I occasionally think ahead many years to the place in the road where colleges will be a discussion and I wonder how I will do it. But your words sum it up well. One foot in front of the other, just as I have done at other times when I wasn’t sure what to do, just as many mothers all over the world, many mothers through history have done. And, yes, with tissues. And also with hugs, with laughter, with creativity, with movement and stillness, with space for our joy and our sadness, with love. With connection and support. I will be thinking of you and holding you and your family in my heart and sending so much love your way. And, as I remind my daughter, no matter where each of us is, even if she’s at home and I’m on a trip, we can always look to the sky to remember how close we are, look to the sun and the moon and know that we are both looking at the same sun and the same moon. xo. Kathryn

  • Melody Sanders
    Posted at 04:55h, 26 April Reply

    Congratulations to her and hugs to mama.

  • Maggie Pinque
    Posted at 00:43h, 27 April Reply

    Ah Tracey,

    Congratulations on SUCH a major milestone. It is a huge deal. And you have a kid moving across the county. I am sure you know wonderful women throughout the east coast who will be willing to share their phone number should she need a mama.

    Celebrate away!

    I can tell you from my own experience, my son leaving this year made me weepy for the first 10 minutes after we dropped him off. After that, we were all good. He will be coming home for nearly four months in a couple of weeks. I suspect it will be A-OK with me when he leaves for his sophomore semester.

    His sister leaves for the University of Vermont the week before he goes back to his school.

    I will have two kids, each 5 hours away, in opposite directions. I am at the bottom of the “V” and they are at each corner of the top.

    Until she leaves, savor the moments.


  • Gail
    Posted at 03:50h, 24 May Reply

    Thank you Beth!

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