Today, she vanished into a black hole. Made plans with us but then hid in bed. Wouldn't answer the door, texts, or the phone. Two hours late, she finally appeared and we planned to go out for bowling and dinner.
Walking a few paces behind me, she suddenly came right up on me, like an aggressive animal with wild eyes, heart racing, and shaking hands. "Don't freak out Mom," she said, "but I'm not going to school this Fall." Then she passed me to race away but I reached out and grabbed her arm.
"Don't freak out, honey," I said, "but I am totally okay with your decision."
"Pffft!" she uttered in disbelief and we didn't say another word.
Bowling was fun but then some jerk hit my sister's car and left without even leaving a note.
Dinner was late but we were hungry. Afterwards, I walked to the car with my daughter and told her I wanted her to go to school to dabble in topics that could lead her to a path she'd like to explore. I said I truly am fine with her not being in school now because she's discovered working with children is something she "thinks" she enjoys. She still isn't letting me in and she says she doesn't feel any better since we talked but I will say, she seems more relaxed, her body is less tense and not shaking anymore... she feels better. I know it.
So, we have a plan. She's going to live here, up the street from my sister with her sister, my youngest daughter! She's going to work for an after school program through my sister's employer and will continue with weekly therapy to curb the depression. The younger one will be in school. Finally, a plan. And finally, a moment where I could say, "I'm proud of you and you are an adult now who can make you own decisions and I respect that." She bristled a bit but went to bed chatting with her sister about furniture and move-in dates.
I may just be able to go back home and have a sense of peace about the road my children are currently on after-all. I realize this is just the beginning but the dam has broken and we are moving again. Maybe I'll even sleep tonight! It's been so long...
PS - Oldest daughter is on a roll. She was quite happy on the phone tonight telling me she has lunch with her mentor on Monday. For the moment, they are all smiling.