Regardless of my philosophical attitude about Jeremy moving out and getting his own apartment (with 4 friends, that is), when I walked into his room and saw the big empty space where his bed used to be, I lost it completely.
Richard had not yet gotten back from the game; I was alone in the suddenly empty and echoey house. I realized then that for 19 plus years, since Jeremy was born, and I carried him up those stairs at Verano Place, terrified that I would drop him, he has not lived apart from us. Unlike other kids, he has never gone to overnight camp, taken a trip to visit Granny and Granddad by himself, or spent a week with a friend. He has never wanted to be apart from us that long, though we often encouraged him to do so.
Now he has really grown up, at least nominally. I am not sure how he will like living with all those smelly guys, and paying so much for the privilege. Naturally, being a kid from Irvine, he had to move into the newest apartment, one we would never be able to afford, though we earn many times what those guys do at Ralphs.
I thought about the questionable digs we inhabited in our early years together, and laughed. Jeremy would never live in some of the places we have. He would probably never set foot in them. And our present place is still a sight older, messier, more broken down than the one he has moved into, with its weight room and other amenities.
I hope he has a wonderful time, and enjoys his freedom now that he is a bit more able to deal with it responsibly than he was when he lost his license last year.
Now I just need to reassure the cats, who are really freaked out. Whistler is wandering around mewing frantically, looking around Jeremy's room with his ears back and his tail puffed up twice its size. Shadow is huddled in a little ball. She tried to go under my covers in the middle of the night, insistently pawing at me till I threw her off the bed.
I plan to buy a cat scratching post/pedestal for them to sit on and look out the window in Jeremy's room, and also to move this computer and desk into the room, looking out the window myself as I work. That will make us all feel better.