My College Girl is Home!

kelsey-on-the-busLast year we graduated our first born from our homeschool.  I was so proud of her for all the late nights studying for SAT's and AP Exams while her friends were out having a good time.  She did most of the research on college prep the two years prior to her graduation and learned so much that she wrote a book to help other college-bound homeschoolers reach their collegiate goals! It was also a sad day when we dropped her at the airport to fly the 1800 miles to move in to her dorm-her home away from home.  At first, there were days I couldn't walk by her room without crying.  She was with me every day for 18 years and now she was gone.  Just when she was fun to be around, fun to sing harmony with, fun to talk to about life, she was 1800 miles away and living a new life with new friends and I couldn't see her sweet face. After a while, the sadness left and a new relationship began to blossom, one in which I was not the main character in her life.  She started off calling a few times a day, but our daily phone conversations became once every few days peppered with emails and Facebook comments occasionally. My biggest fear, as a mom, was that she wouldn't need me anymore and yet that is also my greatest wish!  Isn't that odd?  Our job is work ourselves out of a job!  LOL  We are charged with bringing them up in the way they should go and, when they go, we wish they'd stay. But she called when she was sick, when she was lonely, when she was excited, when she aced a test, when her professor came over to congratulate her on a paper well done.  She called to talk to her 9 y/o brother when she missed him and to tell us all about the funny things she and her friends would do.  She called when she was upset because a friend's sister was in a car accident and she asked for prayer.  She called when she was unsure about what to tell a friend and to tell us that she was struggling with a class assignment. And now, here she is, having just finished her freshman year at Vanderbilt University.  She's a Sophomore now!  The year went so fast!  After the first few months, the rest is sort of a blur.  It seemed to whiz by without warning.  Only three years left and the next three years may not see her home in the summers. So we picked her up from the airport last night.  There she was sporting her new Christian sorority T Shirt and shocked at the sight of her father who finally got his glasses after years of eye doctors and various diagnoses.  She hugged her brother who is now much taller than he was when she left.  She didn't know where the dishes were in the new house because we had only lived here two weeks before she moved out. We took her upstairs to her room behind the closed door for her big surprise. While she was taking finals and packing, we were busy painting her bright, hot pink room her favorite color: green!  We set up some new things in her room to make her more comfortable while she is with us and gave her a green bag of green stuff to go in her new green room.  She loved it! We sat up talking for a while until yours truly got sleepy and had to turn in. She and her dad are night owls.  They stayed up.  I can't wait til she wakes up this morning to spoil her some more.  I can't wait to hear all about her adventure this year.  I can't wait to spend time with her this summer!   She's still my baby girl. I'm so glad we built such a special relationship while she was young. I thank God for her willingness to keep in touch and for the fact that she still feels like she wants our opinion. I am so blessed that she has become the lovely, young, faith-filled young woman she has! Now life seems complete as both my children are here.  My college girl is home!


  • jojosblog

    Thanks everyone! Cindy, congrats on your dd’s upcoming marriage. I can’t imagine that yet. My dd says she isn’t interested in dating til she is done with school and started her career and that’ll be a while.

    I’m praying for you and your 14 y/o Teri! That age can be difficult.

  • cindy holman

    This is so great for you, JoJo!! And I too have a daughter very near her age who is GETTING MARRIED in September and who moved into her own apartment a year ago – so I can really relate with you!! It was weird at first – but I think we are closer than ever now that she is no longer home – and she does want my advice and wants to be with me – which is a wonderful surprise to me after many turbulent teen years. You are right about the fact that you cultivated a close relationship while your children were young – we did the same and our son who is still at home will always be close to us when he leaves home too. I am glad that we know this – because of Ashlee and it’s a great comfort to us parents, isn’t it?

  • Carla

    WELCOME HOME, KELSEY!!! I can only imagine the joy you are feeling this morning, sweetie pie, knowing that she is under your roof once again. . . and for the whole summer! WARNING, WARNING, WILL ROBINSON!!! The summer will pass quickly and you will once again be saying good-bye at the airport. Make the most of every waking moment. Love her up good. Make friends with your “new” woman-child. Soak in her new-found wisdom. Impart more of yours to her. It may only be for a short time, but OH, WHATTA TIME YOU WILL HAVE!!!

  • Terri


    I am so happy for you this morning. I know you all are so excited to get to spend a whole day with her and catch up. Your post brought tears to my eyes because I am trying so hard to get close again to my 14 year old. The post really made me feel like pulling her back out of public school again! I have been leaving that up to her..and praying she will want to homeschool next year. I hope you guys have a fabulous time and keep us updated:)

  • Laurie Neumann

    You sound happy, JoJo and with good reason! It’s great that your daughter is back home for a while – enjoy the time with her!

    We did something similiar for my daughter. She went on a wilderness trip with her youth group for a week one summer. While she was gone, we bought her a new dresser and new curtains, washed the rug, really gave her room a nice, new look. She was thrilled!

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