Tomorrow we leave for Toronto, my son and I along with his best friend. We are going to find the two of them an apartment for their move in May. He hopes to get into film school; she is going for the change of environment.
I have woken today with a heavy heart. My boy is leaving.
I want to cry. I feel the tears well inside me but I fight them down. He can't see them.
I want to tell him he can't go. That Toronto is too far. We won't see each other often enough. Every day isn't often enough for me. But I don't say that.
It's his time. This is the right thing for him.
I can't look at this as him leaving; instead I must see this as a new phase of our lives. But letting go is one of the most difficult things I've ever had to do.
It's stupid, maudlin, yet I can't stop thinking of the day he was born and the days leading up to his birth.
It had been a terrible period of my life. His father left the house one day for a few hours and never came back. Vanished. He'd run away. I was left penniless and alone with a seven-year-old and this unborn child and what was I going to do? How would I support them? How would I get through this?
As my belly grew, I tried to rouse myself from my depression. The only thing that got me out of bed each morning was having a seven-year-old to take care of. I despaired at having another one.
On the day my baby was due, I ran some errands at the nearest mall. While there, I noticed a young couple with a newborn. A wrinkly, pink, mewling newborn.
It was like the clouds parted. "I'm going to have a baby!" The idea struck me with such joy. I was ready.
Three days later so was he and we never looked back. I have loved every minute with him. Literally. We are so similar. We share the same sense of humour, the same logical approach to tackling problems, The same sensitivity to other people's vibes.
And now, he is a man, though barely, and he is ready again. Ready to see what the world has for him.
This time I am not. It came too fast. I should have been more vigilant. Against what, I don't know. Against him growing up? Yes, it's silliness. I know. I know. But I want a do-over.
Instead, I'll be my most encouraging because that's my job now. That's what he needs from me. And I'll look to the universe to keep him safe, to keep him happy, to bring him back to me once in a while.