"Mom, guess what?! I found out I am old enough to go to camp this summer! Can I? I get to leave town and be gone for four days and three nights."
Quin wrote on Facebook that after hearing his request, she "literally had to look away" as tears pooled in her eyes. While she tried to swallow the lump in her throat, her son said: "Mom, you aren't answering. Do you think I can go?"
She promised to talk to his father about the idea but found herself not wanting to make eye contact with her own child as she answered him. "As he walks away, I am relieved," she wrote. "Yet as our distance increases, I can almost feel my influence on him slipping away to his peers."
Although her boy was just asking about attending Summer camp, it brought up a much bigger question to his mom:
But am I ready? Are we already at the point where he's not worried about me tucking him in? Or his snuggle blanket? Or his kiss goodnight? Am I ready to see my son become a young man? A young man who is perfectly okay to leave home and not be sad. He doesn't want to sleep in my bed anymore. The beds at camp would be so much cooler anyway. And they probably are.
How absolutely appropriate.
How absolutely exciting to see him grow.
Yet strangely. I feel a pit in my stomach.
It's happening. I'm losing him. In the way that I should lose him. He's growing. And I can't stop it. Nor should I want to.
At bedtime, he asked about camp again, and this time the mom shared that she thought it would be OK but that it also makes her feel sad. "Then he tenderly looked at me and said, 'If it makes you sad, then I won't go,'" she wrote. "Then my heart broke. Because I knew what him saying that meant. He's old enough to go. And ready or not, here he comes."