"Get In The Car"

Just a few thoughts on “getting out” when the dorm room is done.

So as this time of year gets close again, I always think back to my first college dorm room set-up and here’s my best piece of advice. 


After all the goodies are put away, posters hung and their room is neat and clean for the first time in forever, RUN!!! Don’t look back. RUN!! Get in the Car!!

When my son went off to college for the first time we spent most of the summer before guessing who was going to cry first, he or I.  Of course, I said, “cry, whose going to cry? I’m going to skip out the door and smile all the way home”.  I couldn’t wait for him to go. 

I don’t know about all you parents out there getting ready for this big day, but I noticed when it gets close, they become crazy. Never fought so much with him in his 17 yrs. I know in their minds we don’t know much, but that week, I was the biggest moron ever.

What I’ve come to find out over the years while getting them ready to go, they are so scared, they don’t know what to do. They talk a big game, “Oh I can’t wait to get out of here”, “I’m not going to miss this place”, “can’t wait to be alone, do what I want when I want”, etc. 

Well, when the week before comes and they say their goodbyes to their friends, like they are going to Mars for four year, reality hits, and they become a bunch of Nervous Nellies. Scared to death.

So I say ignore it!  Let them say what they want, don’t take it personally; they are out of their minds with fear. Mostly, for the unknown.  Who will I hang with, what will I do without my BFFs and so on.  Like I said earlier “RUN”.  “RUN” as fast as you can, get in that car, throw it in reverse and accelerate.  Don’t worry, when you get home, the phone will ring and they’ll want to know how you are and what’s going on! 

Oh, and neither one of us cried! 

Enjoy it; it goes fast, really fast.

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Jane Yager-Baumrind August 22, 2012 at 06:46 PM
Barb, When my oldest graduated last year and we pulled in to the driveway of the "house" he was renting, I had heard so many bad things, I never got out of the car. My imagination was enough to tell me DON"T. Everyone asked, "hey mom, don't you want to come in", "no I'm good, all good" was my response. I hear his new place is where it's at, 'on the beach'. Looks like he learned a lesson well! HaHa Enjoy his junior year, they fly!
John M. August 22, 2012 at 06:50 PM
Craig, that was really thoughtless of your parents. At least my father gave me a warning so I could get my seat belt off, slowed to 5 MPH and found a grassy spot for a landing. As a former paratrooper, he was considerate on my first jump.
Maureen M August 27, 2012 at 11:59 AM
My friend (Pally) found your article and suggested I read it. I am so glad I did. My daughter fought with me horribly before she left. I couldn't wait. I knew I would be sad because of all the fighting however I lost it when we said goodbye. I felt like it was all my fault. Now that I read your article I feel much better. It was definitely her fault LOL (only kidding). Thanks again.
Jane Yager-Baumrind August 27, 2012 at 12:49 PM
Maureen, I'm so glad you are feeling better about your daughter going off to school. I'm glad I could "help" a little. Believe me, by the time she comes home for Thanksgiving, you'll be BFF's again. Of, course she'll be a grown up and know way more than you, but its all be good. Enjoy the quite time!
Travis August 27, 2012 at 07:55 PM
Dear Father and Mother: July is the month I remember which brings not only your wedding anniversary but also Father's Day and Mother's birthday. I'm sorry I can't remember the exact dates, but I hope this card will take care of them all. I'm sorry again I cannot send you my address like I promised to last year. But the sensitive nature of my work for the government demands utmost secrecy. I know you will understand. I am healthy and well and making lots of money. I have been going with a girl for several months and I know you would be proud if you could see her. Her name is Betsy but I can tell you no more than that...I hope this card finds you all well as it does me. I hope no one has died. Don't worry about me. One day, they'll be a knock on the door and it'll be me. Love, Travis


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