Off to College: To My Son on Your College Orientation Day by Shannon Mattice

Parenting Teens
6 years ago

Off to College: To My Son on Your College Orientation Day

As you caught some Z's due to our early departure, I looked over at you scrunched in the passenger seat. Your 6-foot frame folded uncomfortably, your knees hitting the dash. When did that happen? When did you become ... a MAN? I glanced in the rear-view mirror, certain I would see my chubby-cheeked towheaded toddler snoozing with his ever-present Pooh, but you weren't there. Blinking back unexpected tears, I checked again just to be sure, but the backseat was empty. 

As we head to your chosen college for freshmen orientation, I wish there was a way for you to truly know how wide open your world has become. I have walked this same path and want you to know that you will find your place. You will take classes that excite you from professors who will challenge you. Don't back down from that challenge – you've got this! 

You will find your people. Every one you meet will shape you. Your teammates, your classmates, the kids you eat dinner with – they will become your family, and that's a good thing. Just promise that you won't forget about us at home, and I promise that we are excited to be on this journey with you. No looking back, only forward. 

Love, Mom

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Ann Marie Patitucci
You brought tears to my eyes, Shannon Mattice ! Thank you for capturing what so many of us feel as our kids grow up! I know Elisa All Schmitz 30Seconds can relate to this one!
Elisa Schmitz
You captured my feelings so very well, Shannon Mattice ! I am so overwhelmed by these feelings. Thank you for sharing what so may of us feel at this bittersweet stage of our lives as parents. I'm looking forward to learning and growing with you. Welcome to our #30Seconds tribe!
Ann Marie Patitucci
Yes, welcome, Shannon Mattice ! We are so lucky to have you!
Leanna Salas
Thank u 4 expressing my exact emotions. All I want to do is cry.... but I gotta be happy and proud is my son....
Shannon Mattice
Thank you for letting me share this with you! Wishing your son all of the best!
Shannon Mattice
Thank you all for the warm welcome!
Dieter Schmitz
What beautiful words Shannon Mattice - Thanks for sharing!
Holly Budde
I've got 3 more years. but reading this? wow!!
Shannon Mattice
I promise those 3 years will just fly by...enjoy your time with them!
Nicole DeAvilla
Wonderful post Shannon Mattice - Welcome to the tribe!
Mindy Hudon, M.S., CCC-SLP
Beautiful! I did the same thing form my twins last year and placed it in their desk drawer for them to find when we had left. Thanks for sharing.
Rachel W. Lewter
As a single parent I can honestly say that the first day of out of state college, drop off day was a painful experience. The five hour drive home was spent reminiscing about all the laughter, talks, vacations and and special moments shared over the past eighteen years. The first hundred miles were filled with tears of sadness and a sense of loss.
As my solitary drive home progressed, tears of joy took over when I realized this was a new beginning for both of us. Not only was my child starting a new life, so was I. In a way we shared this new beginning together.
I can't say the next four years were easy, but we grew together. I believe we both spread our wings and learned to soar.

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