Empty nesting again

Each year I become more convinced time goes more rapidly. That was confirmed again this morning when the youngest and middle daughter headed back to college. Although middle daughter worked in Pierre during the summer, it seems like it was just two or three weeks ago youngest daughter got home for the summer.

They took off today as middle daughter starts school next week and needed to get moved back into her place in Lincoln, Neb., and take care of a variety of things before school starts. She will take her sister to the Omaha Saturday morning for her flight back to Massachusetts. I don’t feel too sorry for her, though. She actually doesn’t start school until September and is spending next week on Cape Cod with the family of one of her college friends — it’s a tough life, I guess. She then goes back to UMass for RA training before the dorms open around Labor Day weekend. (Eldest daughter spent the summer in Columbia, Mo., where she’s about to start work on her second — yes, second — master’s degree.)

That means the two dogs are stuck with the ol’ folks again, which is never as much fun for them. The two ol’ folks are again stuck with each other and while there’s always an adjustment period we get used to it and learned during the first year of empty nesting that we do still actually like each other. (At least I learned that. I’ve never been brave enough to specifically ask my wife if she agrees.)

Still, somebody needs to slow things down a bit. Hell, it was just yesterday I was thrilled to be heading back to college from home.

To be the father of growing daughters is to understand something of what Yeats evokes with his imperishable phrase “terrible beauty.” Nothing can make one so happily exhilarated or so frightened[.]

Christopher Hitchens, Hitch-22: A Memoir

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