As I’ve been toiling away in the home office, Kate has been working feverishly in her bedroom. Tomorrow we take her to Washington, D.C. where she will move into an off-campus apartment for the Senior Year.
Unlike her first trip to Washington or last year’s sojourn to Cairo, this is a milestone step. Essentially, when we drive away tomorrow, Kate stops living at the house and will only return as a visitor.
This entire year is transitional for her, as she establishes herself as a full-time Washington resident, completes her coursework and starts looking for a permanent job. Being a Boren Scholar will help open certain doors and her one-year obligation to the federal government certain should help the hunt, but that does not change the fact that she still needs to hunt.
Kate has had her heart in Washington pretty much since she began her college life and she seems very happy there. It wasn’t a great summer for her after the thrill of Cairo. Too many of her friends were elsewhere, ironically many in D.C. She worked, she studied, and she put off cleaning the room.
With each passing week we spent time with her on beginning adult life issues like renter’s insurance, negotiating a lease, figuring out what to keep here and what to take. We’ve rarely spoken of the fact that this is a major milestone for her as an individual and for us as the parents with one really leaving the nest.
This week we’ve all gotten caught up in the arrangements, the loads of books and clothes for Good Will, the bags and bags of garbage that none of us have really paused to reflect – that’ll probably come this weekend as we settle her in. We’ve had meals together, watched some television together but largely it’s been the grind of preparation.
I’m both looking forward to seeing her blossom on her own and dread the notion that our work with her is largely done.