Like most teenagers, when Kelsey got her driver’s license she started spending more time away from home. On the nights she was staying late at theater practice or the weekends when she was hanging out with her friends, Tripp would go into her room and turn-on the lamp next to her bed. Just like checking the oil in her car, it’s one of the little things he does to remind Kelsey that her Daddy loves her.
Last week, after we got back from dropping Kelsey off at her dorm, I was taking some stuff to her room and noticed the lamp next to her bed was on. I stood there for a minute looking at her bed (it was made for a change) and her uncluttered nightstand without all the electronics that typically follow her around. Then I felt that familiar lump in my throat. I walked around the side of her bed to turn the lamp off and reached under the lampshade for the switch… but I just couldn’t bring myself to do it. So I turned around, walked out of her room, checked the light bulb supply in the upstairs linen closet.
This morning, Kelsey left to go back to school (it was a nice surprise to have her home for a few days this week). Seeing her drive away felt “real” this time since classes start tomorrow and we won’t see her for a couple of weeks. But I noticed that it was a little easier saying good-bye this time. Maybe it’s because she drove away rather than Tripp and I having to leave without her. Or maybe it’s just because we took a couple of baby steps. Either way it’s fine – I’ve got the hang of it now.
And I’ve got plenty of light bulbs.