College acceptances are rolling out and even if your child doesn't know exactly where they are heading, it's not too early to have "The Talk." You know, the one about the birds and the bees, alcohol, drugs, parties, the buddy system at parties, boys, boys and safety, safety in numbers, safety in general, grades, classes, friends, roommates and laundry. (Click here for my health and safety tip list: "What Every Freshman and Parent Should Read Before College").
I had this chat most recently with Mini-Me, a college freshman. Even though I know she had heard my speech before, I wouldn't have been able to sleep at night if I didn't say it, yet again. Trust me, I cringed as the words came out of my mouth, knowing what was coming, "Mom, you don't have to tell me this. I'm not stupid." But, I said it anyway. It gave me peace of mind.
How do you go from holding your baby in your arms that you've loved, nurtured and protected to dropping them off, ALONE?! It feels unnatural to let go, but you must. You want to make sure they remember every piece of advice you ever gave them, no matter how big or small. Look both ways before crossing the street, don't run with food in your mouth, stay way from mixed drinks, wash your hands, etc.
In college they will be making just about all their decisions themselves and it's scary no matter how good a head they have on their shoulders. They will make mistakes. You just pray they're not big ones. I told her the same thing I told College Boy, "You can call us 24/7. About ANYTHING. I'm serious." We set up a Skype account so we can look at each other when we speak. Not all kids are a fan of this because parents can see the mess they're living in now that mom's not there to clean up. I promise not to complain. Really. I'll try.
Once I finish filling Mini-Me's head about the perils of beer pong and walking alone at night, I realize she's not the only one that needs advice before she goes. I don't have a clue how to use Skype or Tivo or the remote. I'm not the only one having a hard time. For weeks my husband randomly calls me during the day just to say "Our baby is going away to college." Sigh. Lucky for me, I'm pretty sure he knows how to work the remote.
You might also like to read What To Put In A Care Package and Shopping For College & Getting Ready For Move In Day.