Tomorrow our almost 18-year-old daughter is driving our 13-year-old Honda down to the Florida panhandle for a week in what she thinks will be heaven. Tomorrow her mother begins to worry in earnest. “But, Mom,” she begged, “Lots of kids in my class are going on trips and some don’t even have chaperones!”
My husband and the rest of my family think I have lost my marbles for letting her go, but she is going in a group of only five girls who I know are relatively tame, one of the girls’ parents will be staying in the same condo building, and most importantly they will not be close enough to the dreaded Panama City to want to visit (MTV is there so it will be party city). I do have some faith in my fairly level-headed daughter, but I have also drilled into her head all the horror stories I have ever heard about spring break and have given her all the advice I know of to stay safe. And she’ll be carrying a AAA card in case of auto problems.
All parents have to face that dreaded day when their child turns 18 and expects freedom. My mother would tell my sister and I when we were teens that we were like baby birds wanting to fly, but we just weren’t ready yet and still needed our mother. Now I am the mother bird, hovering and chirping as one of her babies leaves the nest to venture out on its own.
My daughter is very excited about this big trip without her parents, hoping for wonderful memories of friendship and freedom (and shopping) to tide her through the rest of her senior year which seems to drag on and on as she waits for the milestones of graduation and college. My chick is ready to go!
Buk, buk, buk, bukuck! Happy Easter!