I think this is it. My first born has left home for real. Oh sure, his belongings are all in the basement, and his mail still arrives to the front door, but this time he packed his Christmas Stocking. It's official. He has left home.
He has left home before - to go to university, to share apartments with friends, to travel Europe with his band, to live in a communal house. But this time, as he headed up North to live in perpetual winter (literally, not figuratively), he took his Christmas stocking.
For twenty-seven Christmases that stocking was hung on the same mantle piece. This Christmas it will hang somewhere else. And a piece of my heart with it.
This is what an empty nest feels like. Lined with memories, but as the leaves fall away, it just looks so lonely and precarious and vulnerable.
And there really isn't enough kleenex.