Thursday, August 13, 2009
Second grade, college supplies
It’s time to “get back in the routine.”
I’ve heard that a lot in the past week or so from those of us with school-age children.
And most parents look forward to those days.
Classes began at most area schools either last week or this week.
At my house, one of the hardest parts is getting them to bed earlier and waking them up earlier.
But this year that’s the easy part – the hardest is getting ready to move the oldest of the three to college.
We will be heading south on Friday with dorm supplies aboard as Emma goes to the University of Southern Mississippi in Hattiesburg.
Emma and I drove to Alabama Sunday afternoon for a visit with my mom. It was a great day – something we had hoped to do before Emma moved four and half hours away.
On the drive over, I asked Emma, “What are your thoughts about college – excited, nervous? What are you feeling?”
She basically replied that it had not sunk in yet.
“I don’t really feel like I’m leaving,” Emma said.
And that’s probably typical in this situation – for the parents and the children.
I mean one room of our house has a corner filled with things we will be transporting to Southern Miss – pillows, sheets, towels, etc.
We’ve been talking about college and planning for college for months.
But I guess it doesn’t sink in until it actually takes place – or better yet, until you arrive on campus, unload, unpack, help them prepare their dorm room and leave.
We spent some quality time with Mother on Sunday. I couldn’t help but notice some of the many family pictures she has on display. There was one of Emma, as a child, in her Sunday dress and clinging to her favorite Barney doll. Then in another room there were several of her senior photos from the past school year.
We relived some of those memories Sunday and talked a lot about the future.
We went to church with Mother Sunday night. I grew up in that small, rural church – Barn Creek Church of Christ – and it was good to visit with good friends who helped raise me.
It stirred memories from my youth – the Sunday school classes, leading singing, presenting Wednesday night talks from the pulpit, getting baptized and more.
After the service Sunday night, one longtime friend talked to me about when he moved his youngest girl to college. He said it didn’t sink in until he got back home, went to her room and realized finally that all of her “stuff” was gone. He said he and his wife then sat at the kitchen table a little while and cried.
Of course, that made me feel better.
It is indeed an exciting time for the Burlesons – a daughter starting college, a son driving (with a parent) and another daughter beginning second grade.
I was looking over Emma’s pile of college material Sunday night and noticed on a table nearby things like glue, notebooks, scissors, pencils – all part of a second grader’s school supply list.
I suddenly remembered a photo of Emma when she was entering kindergarten at Aberdeen. She was sitting in a desk – smiling. It was for a back-to-school edition of The Aberdeen Examiner.
That was 13 years ago. It seems like yesterday.
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