My friend Lisa has described the feeling of leaving the house, leaving the children, being off on one's own as being like a helium balloon - once let go, one drifts up and away feeling lighter and lighter.
Today as I bid both boys adieu at the gates of school, the feeling was more like a rocket had launched from my chest. and e x h a l e . I had been looking forward to this very moment often (remember this gentle reader?)
I now have some time and space alone for myself. Before now I could probably count the number of times I've been in my house alone on one hand (and Smith clicking and gabbing away in the home office is going to be ignored right now for sake of argument.) It feels good.
I ran into another person who was having the same feelings, but she was feeling guilty too. Somehow I am not. It can be painful to watch them grow up and away from me, but I am happy for my kids - they are going off on the next adventure of their lives (albeit with much less ME in it.) It is good for them. And I am happy for me, for I too am going about the next adventure in my life!