Moving Kelsey to her college dorm was one of the most wonderful, exciting, stressful, exhausting, happy, and emotional days of my life.
Tripp, Kelsey, and I got an off to an early start in order to make our 8:30 a.m. check-in time. Tripp drove the truck loaded down with giant tubs of dorm room stuff like bedding, lamps, and closet organizers while Kelsey and I followed behind him in her car with her clothes and decorations in the trunk. I made the white elephant (having to say goodbye at the end of the day) ride in the back seat with it’s seatbelt securely fastened and with handcuffs on.
The drive down went by fast. Leaving at dark-thirty made for an easy drive with little traffic along the turnpike . Kelsey and I sang along to Bob FM and I listened along to her nervous chatter – both of them equally soothing. Once we got to the residence hall is when the crazy set in. The “express” move-in at Kelsey’s residence hall was experiencing some technical difficulties with two of their five elevators. Needless to say – things were pretty backed up. And that by itself wouldn’t have been any big deal except for the fact that huge black storm clouds were barreling their way towards us.
Gotta love Oklahoma weather.
Thankfully, we got all her stuff inside the lobby just before the torrential rain and 50 mph winds came. We waited our turn for the elevator and then got all of her stuff moved in. After the storms were over, check-in resumed and finally Bryan, Carrie, and Cayli were able to get her things moved in.
A few months ago, right after they were confirmed as roommates, Kelsey and Cayli went to the housing website and selected the loft style dorm room furniture arrangement. It was a great idea. They each have their own little nooks and it gives them so much more space in their room. In fact, all of the girls on her floor kept walking by and saying how much they wished they had lofted their beds. Even the other moms kept poking their heads in to have a look at our girls’ room. Carrie and I would not-so-secretly high-five when they would compliment our girls on all their cute dorm room stuff, getting ideas for decorating their daughters’ rooms. (We’re not competitive though…noooooooooo.)
Next we got Kelsey’s clothes in the drawers and her closet organized. This little hanging bin thing (Target is THE place for dorm room organizers!) turned out to be a great place for shoes and purses. A concept completely lost on my dear husband – all day I kept having to remind Tripp that this was indeed a GIRL’S dorm room.
The other awesome thing in their room is the “kitchen” area. Carrie found this awesome fridge and we brought the microwave. Kelsey’s friend Ashlyn warned, “I’m coming to raid your refrigerator!”
The next challenge was putting up pictures, mirrors, and other wall décor. Getting the Command strips to stick to the wall was by far the biggest frustration of the day.
Phase 1 move-in was complete and next was the sorority meeting where we got all the information about the upcoming “rush” process. By this time everyone, daughters included, was a little tired and goofy.
After the meeting we made yet ANOTHER trip to Target for some last minute bathroom accessories (Kelsey and Cayli share the sink on the right). Tripp said that we should have bought stock in Target months ago.
Their room turned out great and our girls were so happy with their new home.
Once we finished getting everything together, we took our girls to dinner (by this time I had strapped the white elephant into the back of Tripp’s truck with his heavy duty tie-downs). After dinner, we made the anxious drive back to the dorm. We stood in front of the residence hall taking a few last pictures outside – visiting hours were over and the girls had to get back for their first floor meeting. And then came the hard part…the thing I had been dreading since the day Kelsey started Kindergarten. We said goodbye to our sweet girl.
I’m not going to lie – I cried on and off the whole way home.
I was completely exhausted, both physically and emotionally, when we finally made it home around midnight. Tripp and I were getting ready for bed when his phone rang. Kelsey was calling to let us know how her floor meeting went. Tripp talked to her for a minute then handed the phone to me. She and I talked for a bit, but she was tired and getting ready for bed too. Right before we hung up, Kelsey said, “I love you, Momma.” With tears in my eyes I replied, “I love you too, Sweetie.”
After I got off the phone, Tripp and I crawled into bed and he put his arm around me. This morning I woke up feeling a bit like I’d been hit by a truck, but relieved that everything had gone so smoothly. Tripp made the comment that wasn’t nearly as sad as he thought it would be. And I think that’s due in large part to the fact that Kelsey was just so happy. As a parent, I think it’s nearly impossible to be sad when your child is so excited and thrilled. It was a huge day that she’ll remember for the rest of her life.
The other thing that made the day so fun was being there with Bryan, Carrie, and Cayli. It was a special day and I’m so glad that we got to share it with them. Plus it was great having the support of my best friend right there.
Yesterday was surreal – it’s hard to believe that I have a daughter in college now. But like I said, it was a wonderful, happy day. And a memory that I will cherish for the rest of my life.