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Not My Vacation

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I count the days. He’ll be home soon and I can actually see him since he broke his leg.


Yes, my son broke his leg at college, a college only three hours away. And in what may come as a shock to all but the Erma Bombeck mothers of the world, I let him convince me that he should handle this by himself. So he had surgery—on his own. Not exactly on his own: he lives with nine other guys (and I’m guessing the occasional girlfriend/one night stand—or hook-up as they now say). Self-sufficient son was sure his prior sprains and soccer injuries had well prepared him for the surgery and recovery to come. And so his father and I practiced the separation ritual that is part of college …


There was a silver lining in this … after a few weeks he actually thanked us for taking care of him all those other times he was injured. It seems that a roommate’s care is not the same as mothers’!


And so, high on the rarely heard thanks, I waited anxiously for darling son to arrive. I was sad that he had struggled so hard with the injury and was missing spring vacation with friends, but I was sure that he had matured through it all. Time together was going to be so special. I was appreciated. And then he arrives.


And suddenly having him home means I’m missing the imaginary vacation in my head … the one where I’m not being asked for money. Or picking up empty pizza boxes. Or watching him sleep past noon every day. Or leaving every light and television on in the house when he leaves—even though he’s an environmental studies major!


I missed him, I worried about him, and after two days, we both wanted him to return to his friends. And when he drives off I start to worry about him.


Sons: Can’t live with them, can’t live without them.

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