The view from the second story window was almost completely obscured by the two oak trees standing like sentinels in the front yard. What could be seen was the remnants of a recently abandoned robin’s nest perched precariously in the fork of the branch nearest the window, small pale blue cracked egg shells were all that was left behind. “Recently abandoned”; she repeated , out loud this time. She could relate to that concept as her gaze swept the room. So much stuff, baseball gloves, posters, pennants, and a closet crammed full to overflowing with articles marking various stages in her son’s life. No particular order to the heaps and stacks. No way for a stranger to discern the sequence of their arrival or of their discharge from current usefulness.
But she was no stranger and her heart was swept with waves of emotion as she looked at each memento of days now gone. Forever gone. Memories ghosted through her as she reverently touched each object. This room had become a time capsule and now the door was locked, trapping her and its contents for eternity. The objects she touched were mere remnants of the life of a child, her child, as they had traveled together to this jumping-off point in his life.
Not wanting to dampen his excitement she had put on a brave face as she helped him pack his things for his move to college. She had fussed at the mess he was creating with his last minute scramble to find this or that but her heart ached, and ached horribly, with each item he packed away. “Well, There, I guess that’s it!” he had said as he emptied the last drawer in his dresser. The hollow sound of the empty drawer thumping closed echoed within the pit of her stomach.
“There that’s it”. That was it? Is it? He was moving. He had always been moving but she had always been part of the journey until now. An essential part. Not some discarded catcher’s mitt or the stub of a souvenir concert ticket. But now things had changed.
Having put on a brave smile she waved goodbye and watched his car disappear into the distance. As she sat in his room later she smiled wondering if one day another little boy or girl would be there marveling at daddy’s stuff and boy would she ever have some stories to tell!