I’m cleaning out the kids' bathroom–going through the drawers throwing out the endless half bottles of face scrub, deodorant, hand lotion. Weeding through the mountain of hair clips, scrunchies and lipstick samples. Tossing the long forgotten hair dye and glue. It’s been snowing for several days running. Winter is wearing on my spirits. I picked this job this morning because purging stuff usually feels like an accomplishment and because, with the kids both off at their respective colleges, the room, once clean, will stay clean.
But suddenly, sitting on the bathroom floor surrounded by an ocean of loose throat lozenges, bobby pins, disposable razors and toothpaste tube ends, my chest grows tight. I don’t want to feel it but I do. Loss. Nothing still here made the cut. It’s derelict--irrelevant to my kids' current lives. Soon this bathroom will be generic–a guest bathroom without personality, without their faces in the mirror.
Just yesterday I was discussing Anna’s plans to get a VISTA Summer Reading internship and an apartment with friends in Minneapolis for the summer. A good plan. She was miserable at home last summer. Pat’s apartment lease runs through August. He’ll stay in Minnesota, as well, working and taking classes. It is time and it is all good and yet....
I know what I’m losing but not what is ahead.