One thing I’ve learned as my children have gone off to college: with each one that leaves home, I get a piece of my brain back. It’s true. Suddenly all the day-to-day details that I keep in my head are gone, for I don’t see them on a day-to-day basis. Nor do I know all the assignments or appointments or responsibilities that fill their schedules. Therefore, I don’t have to wonder, remind, cajole, or take care of any of those things. And that’s where a portion of my brain is free again. Free from multi-tasking on the cognitive level. Free of details that are no longer mine to remember. Free of anxiety, for if I don’t know, I don’t worry.
What I find really amazing about this is that this is true in spite of having three very independent children. I haven’t taken care nor kept up with everything for them, by any means. And yet even then there are just things a mom carried around in her head when her children live at home. (For instance, my head gets more cluttered in the summers when my son comes home and I have two kids and a husband to fill my brain with things like work schedules and trying to figure out who will be home for dinner on what days!) To be honest, these last few weeks of every senior year are the worst–filled with dates to remember, details to get done before graduation, and lists of things to get done before sending them to college in August starting to pile up. Add on a major bathroom redo and revisions on a deadline and, well, I’m ready to have my brain back. All of it. I just keep telling myself that August is coming . . .