It's a dorm room, roughly ten by twelve, to be shared by two teenage girls who have not yet met face to face.
Two twin beds, two dressers, two desks, two chairs and the decorating excitement of two girls already inhabits room B304A of Lora Robins Court at the University of Richmond.
I just waded through my living room, a space of about twice the dorm room's size wondering how what's piled in there will ever fit. I feel very certain based on the phone and e-mail contact of the roommate that the bulk is definitely times two, maybe plus.
There's the computer, in order to dress it out with all the school requests it had to be a good sized tower. I saved precious space by shelling out the money for a flat screen monitor. We compromised on smaller speakers and nixed the subwoofer. A smaller printer that duals as a scanner and we still know she's relegated to homework on a lapdesk perched on her bed.
The bedspread, sheets, blanket, towels, and pillows sit 8 feet high. There's a box for makeup, a box for computer disks, a box for paper, a box for snacks, a box for this and two boxes for that. A laundry basket, a crate for cleaning supplies, under the bed boxes, and over the door racks. There's magic shelves and magic hangers all designed to create magic space. Our shared expense was the phone, iron and tv/vcr. The roommate brings the fridge and microwave, and the stereo.
There's the hair dryer, and the curling iron, the hot rollers and the cool irradescent shower bucket. We've a desk lamp and a fan wedged next to the full length mirror.
Then there's me, overly anxious, compulsively obsessively attentive to detail with my goodie bag of every kind of electrical and computer adaptors known to man, woman or beast. And lists...oh God do I have lists. Flashlight, umbrella, screwdriver and a lockbox all tucked in a nook or cranny.
The clarinet, the books, the calculator and the school supplies round out the stack. *She grabs a pencil and notates: 'remember tennis racket'*
We've not yet started on clothes.
Bear in mind a not a single school morning of the past four years saw less than five clothing changes before we were 'fittin' to go out the door. Glance if you dare at the closet that rivals Hecht Company's junior department. Pray for me as I deal with this last phase of packing. Pity me that several alerations have yet to be done, the sewing machine shoved in the back of a closet.
To further complicate matters, all this must fit in the back seat and trunk of a smaller car and only the cab of a truck. Oh sure, I could rent a U-haul, but I keep telling myself, if it won't fit in the car, it won't fit in the dorm room. Ah...there's always my lap as well. And it's a long long walk from the parking lot to the dorm.
I'm constantly asked if I will miss her. She's been my life for 18 years, it would only be natural. In just a couple days she leaves, leaves a place where she's only had to reach for clean clothing, only had to sit down and there was a hot meal, only had to ask Mom and it became so.
I've been working ten hour days at my place of employment for weeks, frantically managing to accomplish all the last minute details in between time clock rings. It's been hectic, my nerves are frayed and I'm exhausted.
I've not had time to consider the feelings of missing her. I imagine for a few weeks I'll be so busy putting the house back together that my mind and hands will be too full to realize the emptiness. I'm happy for her new life and it will be nice to spit my toothpaste out in the morning without moving her makeup out of the sink. Perhaps it will be like a vacation for me? Less laundry, less work? Perhaps I'm ready to cut the apron strings? Perhaps it won't be such a big deal afterall?
It's just college right? It's not the end of the world, right?
But there's the in-room phone, and the cell phone and email and snail mail, the internet phone and the computer is equipped with a video camera. It's only a four hour drive if you disobey traffic laws. Family weekend is in September, a fall break in October, Virginia is a nice Sunday drive, Thanksgiving is so close I smell the pumpkin pie....and then there's Christmas...
Okay, so maybe I've been thinking about it afterall.