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Fear of flying

Getting my daughter ready to go off to college makes me think about that time in my own life. My parents bundled my belongings into a few suitcases and a locker trunk and sent me off on a plane. There were no meal plan options to worry about. I ate virtually every meal in the dining hall. Once a month I got a check in the mail for spending money—$25!

For my daughter, I have to also get her a laptop and printer so she can do her homework—and IM me. I got her a bank account (that I can transfer money into) with a debit card so she can pay for books, drugstore items, the occasional movie or burger, and (since I didn't opt for "concierge service" at the dorm) toilet paper. We're making a packing list that includes her cell phone charger.

I had none of those things. Some of my college friends had checking accounts, but they actually wrote paper checks. There were no debit cards, ATM cards, computer networks, laptops, e-mail, or IM.

And yet still the core of this phase of life is the same. Putting your kid on a plane to college (or dropping him or her off by car) is still an act of faith. I've done the best I could for her for 18 years. Now it's up to her. I'm like a mother bird who has pushed her fledgling from the nest and now she hopes it doesn't drop like a stone. I suppose it's a little easier for people. Fledglings don't have e-mail.

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( 7 comments — Leave a comment )
miladyinsanity
Jul. 29th, 2007 02:43 pm (UTC)
Worrying about meal plan options has to be better than worrying over what she can cook, right?

LOL. My dad tried to talk me into getting a catered hostel, rather than have me do the cooking.
karen_w_newton
Jul. 29th, 2007 03:11 pm (UTC)
She can actually cook pretty well, but I wouldn't want her to spend time on that. The thing about dining halls is, they have specific hours, and she's used to wandering into the kitchen any time of the day or night. I worry she will miss mealtimes and then snack on junk. Sigh.
miladyinsanity
Jul. 29th, 2007 03:18 pm (UTC)
I'm Chinese, and at the moment, I don't like the idea of living purely on Western food, so that's really the main reason why I'm not on a meal plan.
karen_w_newton
Jul. 29th, 2007 03:53 pm (UTC)
Makes perfect sense. If she was going to school in Hong Kong or Tokyo or even Mexico City I would probably get a much more limited meal plan. She loves food from all those places but not necessarily for breakfast.
miladyinsanity
Jul. 29th, 2007 03:58 pm (UTC)
Exactly!
stephdray
Jul. 30th, 2007 01:47 pm (UTC)
She'll do great. She must be so excited, and that first year is going to be so life-changing for her. It's great that you can stay in touch on IM though. Certainly, I kept my contact with my folks to a once-a-week phone call when I was in college, so you're ahead of the game!
karen_w_newton
Jul. 30th, 2007 01:54 pm (UTC)
Yeah, even the phone is different. We now have unlimited long distance, so there's no ticking clock on a call. But AZ is 3 hours earlier right now (they don't do daylight savings time! how odd!) so I told her not to call me after 7:00 p.m.

And she is totally excited.
( 7 comments — Leave a comment )

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