It’s a quiet Sunday morning, after a busy, sad, and hopeful week.
For us, the biggest news is that Middle Guy has been delivered to his freshman dorm suite in San Diego, and the quiet reality of that – the empty room in the house that is waiting to be cleaned out and symbolizes his launch into the world – is weighing on us.
I’m thrilled at who he’s become, anxious about the world he’s headed into and his place in it, happy because I think he’ll do well in dealing with that world, and mostly sad because I really like him and will miss him as I still miss his older brother, Biggest Guy.
On the drive home, I thought about how collapsed time seems in these moments – I still clearly remember standing on the sidewalk eighteen years ago hearing the news that we were going to have a second son. It seems impossibly close to the yesterday when I told him we could cross the street to the car on our own, and he ought to go back up and meet his suitemates.
We hugged, and TG and I forced ourselves not to look back as we walked away.
And as soon as we got home last night, we got word that TG’s friend John had died. She went to see him Friday, and knew his time was short even though he was lucid and asking about the boys and about me. I’d hoped to get to go see him today. Instead we’ll help his family – scattered around the country – arrange the logistics of their arrivals for the funeral.
TG and I were even laughing a bit at the cheap coincidence; start a life, end a life.
Links in a chain going forward and backward further than we can see.