Coolister is getting ready to move out next week.
I have mixed feelings about it, but I won't bore you with my crazy roller coaster of emotions.
As he was packing his life up into suitcases and boxes I came down to his room to check in on him. I started to tell him that some of the things he had packed into storage boxes were unnecessary things he wouldn't care about. (I was told recently that this is called Helicopter Mom Syndrome. I prefer to call it 'intervention with love' - but I'm trying to quit. Really.)
There were some plastic flags torn from the finish chute at various races (I'll put those in my running journal), notes and schedules from some classes in high school (I can pass those along to some friends who are taking those classes), plastic dollar store trophies won in contests (But don't you think they're funny, Mom?), an intricate snowflake cut from printer paper (My friend David mailed that to me. It is NOT going in the trash!) and so on.
At one point he showed me a letter and pointed out that it was a note I had written him. He mentioned that he could tell me all about what it said without even opening it up and that he kept things like that because they meant something to him. My heart softened a bit.
He pulled out a thank you card and told me it was one I left on his bed a few years back.
And then he pulled out the bottom drawer of his dresser, gathered something hidden beneath it into his arms and turned to show me this:
Every lunch bag I had given him during his sophomore year of high school.
You should make these into a book or something, Mom - these were the best jokes, ever!
Do you think I should have thrown these away?
I realized in that moment that he and I have something in common. We are both overly sentimental and hang on to silly objects that hold happy memories for us.
My oldest boy, who I always see so much of his father in, has a part of me in there, too.
I left the room and let him finish packing.
On his own.