Mom's of boys will relate. When a son leaves his dad, that dad will still have his hunting buddy and his fishing buddy, and his watching horror movies partner. When a son leaves his mom, she loses the one person she can take care of that appreciates home cooking, bandaids on booboo's, late night talks, and being needed. Even if it means your son needs his green mids washed on a Thursday night at 10 pm for a Friday game. Or that you need to run back to the store to pick up that one thing you forgot for his favorite cookies. You were the one person in his life that would be there unconditionally, be their biggest fan and greatest allie, and the person they could count on. It's not to say that dad's don't have that too, it's just different.
As we approach college move in day, I've come to the realization that life doesn't have to stop when your kids leave the nest. I went through this four years ago when our oldest headed off to his first year of college, and had varying episodes of sadness/elation every year after.
I'm not sad that our youngest will be gone. I know that we will see him virtually every weekend through mid November for his football games, and then after that the end of the semester will be here and he'll be home for a month. We will text (I hope), and talk (please call), when he has time. I will offer up editing of papers if necessary and his dad will be there if something goes wrong on his truck.
I'm not sad that our oldest is leaving too, a few days later, because I know that his journey is nearly over and he'll be moving on to the next phase of his life.
I'm sad that they grew up too fast. It's a parents job to prep their child for the real world, or maybe be a barrier so their child doesn't turn into an asshole. You spend 18 years prepping them to move away. The lucky ones get them for more than 22, but life definitely changes once they are on their own, even if it is at college.
I am sad I won't get daily hugs and kisses and thank yous for making their lunch or favorite dinner on a Tuesday night. I'm sad I won't be able to sit with them after practice while they eat dinner at 8 pm.
You send them with what they need, like Tylenol and sports cream, heating pads and enough socks to make it until the next time they are home. But you are never really prepared that they actually can do their laundry, or make a meal, or remember to call their sibling on their birthday. You aren't prepared to cook for two instead of four. You aren't prepared to shop for fewer groceries. And you aren't prepared that when you go into the freezer for a chocolate covered caramel ice cream cone that it will actually be there.
I don't know what it would be like to be the mother of daughters. I know I was a handful, but not overly so. I got away with a lot being the 5th of five kids so maybe by the time I was ready for college, my parents just were tired and wanted me out. I wouldn't have made a good mom of girls. Too many dance lessons, hair ties, prom dresses and drama.
I'll take my boys any day.