Friday August 27th 2010, 1:58 PM
Filed under: desire,Grief,ineptitude,kids


It’s been barely twenty-four hours since we left Babygirl at college.

We had a nice drive out there, unloaded the car and loaded up the dorm room. Everything fit, but she was a bit exasperated by mommy’s desire to help her unpack. She wanted to get her schedule and roam around for a little while. We got the schedule and a few notices about the social things that were going on last night but she immediately noticed one thing….she only had four classes listed. She added up the credits and they added up to what amounted  to…..ready for this?…..part time student status.

Oh shit.

Well there was nothing to be done yesterday. That had to wait for today when she met up with her student advisor. We left her with her boy and roommate. There were dewy eyes, but no tears. I was proud of myself.

So, first thing this morning, she set off in search of  one person who could fix this. Apparently there is no one who can do that. She was shuttled from office to office – at one point she sat for two hours waiting to talk to a man who could only tell her that he couldn’t help her! Full of frustration, anger and anxiety, she called the last person in the world who was equipped for this type of emergency…..

Her mother.

Yep, she called me. I woke up with raging allergies which set off a killer migraine. I had already thrown up twice and was almost ready to rip out my own eyeball when the phone rang. She tried to explain what was happening and I needed her to repeat everything over and over until I could comprehend what she was telling me. Did we need to call the school? Did we only pay enough tuition for a part time student?  What was happening?? Through her tears and her trembling voice I could finally make it all out. I wanted to hug her. After all these years of being uncomfortable with hugging, that was all I could think of doing. There was no way  I could fix this for her. There was nothing that could be done until tomorrow. I couldn’t comfort her. I cried, making my nose stuffy and making my head pound even more.

I suggested that she print out the financial records that show that she has paid her tuition and that she is in a dorm. That way she will be armed when she goes to the various offices. Her printer isn’t hooked up yet and she’ll have to use her RA’s or another student’s.

She had a half  hour until she met a friend for lunch so I told her to sit down and relax. Her roommate had made coffee so I suggested that she have a cup.  And then she sobbed out “I can’t even do that! I don’t have any milk for it! I’m going to the store later!”

It was going downhill for both of us.

Finally, we came to the decision to breathe and wait for tomorrow or at least for calmer minds. I hung up the phone, ran to the bathroom to be sick and then threw myself on the bed. I buried my head into my pillow and screamed….and screamed….and screamed. Then I called Lostmahead to vent and cry out my feelings of helplessness. She came running. After a cup of tea and a hug, she went back to work and I laid down to try to sleep.

Two hours later, (I still hadn’t slept) Babygirl got in touch again. Her status is changed to full time student. Her credits have gone from nine to twelve. And as we chatted, she was offered a job in the bookstore. (It would be hella nice if she got a discount on her books!!)  As long as it won’t interfere with her scheduling, she will take it.

While not everything is in place, at least most of it is. As Lostmahead pointed out, Babygirl has handled past problems with teachers and bosses with admirable finesse. I should place my trust in that ability and simply remind her that some things take time. (she is like her mom in that we both have problems with patience)

And so, in the first twenty-four hours of being the mother of a college student, I have gone through

*The horror of not being able to comfort my child as she sobbed through the phone line.

*The frustration of not being able to make this mess go away.

*The pain of trying to comprehend important information with a sledgehammer pounding in my head.

*The relief that things are working out.

*The elation that there may be a job.

*And the pride of knowing that my girl may have had a breakdown, but she pulled herself up by the bootstraps and managed to get the ball rolling on the right track.

I haven’t had moodswings like this since I was pregnant with her!!


  1. Avitable said:

    on August 27, 2010 at 4:19 PM

    I’m glad things worked out and she showed that she was capable of taking care of it!
    Avitable´s last blog post ..The most offensively stereotypical joke in the world- An Avitable original

  2. Skittles said:

    on August 27, 2010 at 4:34 PM

    Okay …You have every right to be gloom and doom girl! OMG! I can’t even think of My Girl going off to college. Will you go drinking with me when that happens….you’ll need to get a license so I can drink until I am oblivious!
    I am glad that baby girl got it together! She’s cool like that so be proud!
    So when do we drink heavily!

  3. Finn said:

    on August 27, 2010 at 4:41 PM

    You should be proud of her for working it all out herself. You did good, Mom. xo

  4. Metalmom said:

    on August 27, 2010 at 4:43 PM

    Avitable-I think that if I had been feeling up to par, I would have reminded her that I have lots of confidence in her. Unfortunately, I was worse than she was!! She is running on fumes sleep-wise.

  5. Metalmom said:

    on August 27, 2010 at 4:45 PM

    Skittles-Girl, I’m ready NOW! I need to RELAX and get used to the idea that she is a grown-ass woman…..That’s right I said grown-ass….which is way different from fat ass!!

  6. Metalmom said:

    on August 27, 2010 at 4:45 PM

    Finn-You have no idea how proud I am of her. *sniff* My baby is a smart one. *sniff*

  7. Sybil Law said:

    on August 27, 2010 at 5:40 PM

    And because you did such a damned fine job of raising her, she was able to take care of everything herself!
    Good job!!
    And yay! for her!!
    Sybil Law´s last blog post ..My Awesome Jonas Brothers Review

  8. Metalmom said:

    on August 28, 2010 at 4:57 PM

    SybilLaw-She did an awesome job and today she is very happy and upbeat. Miss Social Butterfly is mingling and having fun. Classes start Monday and she is very excited. One of the big topics of her writing class is vampires and zombies. That’s why we pay the big bucks!!!

  9. Shelli said:

    on August 28, 2010 at 8:06 PM

    I got a migraine post college drop off, too! Must be something to that…Glad it all turned out alright.
    Shelli´s last blog post ..Flickr Friday- Painting Faces

  10. Metalmom said:

    on August 28, 2010 at 8:54 PM

    Shelli-I think it is the release after all the stress of the preparation. That AND the allergies. I was out in the fresh air for the first time in ….. forever! Today, she is happy and enjoying a game of ‘human foozball’!

  11. bubblewench said:

    on August 30, 2010 at 6:57 AM

    You raised one helluva young woman. I’m glad she was able to get it all worked out.
    bubblewench´s last blog post ..Long Overdue

  12. Grant said:

    on August 30, 2010 at 9:40 AM

    Next time say “Enjoy the college experience” and hang up. Seriously, my entire college career was a constant fight with bureaucracy and incompetence. When I finally graduated I had to return to school several times because my final grades had not been submitted, then the wrong grades were submitted, and then I had to start repaying my loans while they were sorting that out because, while saying I had not graduated, the finance office said I actually graduated six months early (for one loan – the other said I graduated on time). That’s the only part of college that prepares you for real life.

    Don’t worry about the mood swings. It’s probably just menopause. If I know as much about that as any other guy, I think you can just stretch and walk it off.
    Grant´s last blog post ..Just so you know Im not dead

  13. Metalmom said:

    on August 30, 2010 at 9:59 AM

    bubblewench-I almost called you, but I knew you were at work. I needed to be talked “off the edge”. Yeah, now that we did ‘this’ I know that she can handle the rest!! :)

  14. Metalmom said:

    on August 30, 2010 at 10:02 AM

    Grant-You now, I am hearing of more and more colleges screwing this type of thing up! It’s appalling!! You really must have pissed off some Fiscal Gods in a past life! Oh, and Grant? I’ll walk it off, buddy, in my STILETTOS and all over your face!!! :))

  15. bubblewench said:

    on August 30, 2010 at 10:03 AM

    You can call me ANYTIME. You are way more priority over work!! Keep that in mind! Hell, I would have loved the distraction. ;)
    bubblewench´s last blog post ..Long Overdue

  16. HoosierGirl said:

    on September 8, 2010 at 2:11 PM

    You KNOW I understand all that! Rachael hasn’t had a snag like that one, but I still worry about her so much. I’m proud of your girl and I totally understand your reaction.

    We need to meet sometime for a major chocolate blowout!



  17. Metalmom said:

    on September 8, 2010 at 4:38 PM

    HoosierGirl-It was horrendous while it was happening. She handled it all like a champ….once she took a breath! I hope Rachael NEVER goes through that!! (Hey, do you have Skype?)

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