Here I sit, exactly 10am on a Wednesday morning, in a Student Union on a college campus in the middle of Kansas. I’ve been here before, long ago, when the décor smacked of the 70s and the people walking through seemed old and foreign to me. I remember coming here for various school events, for testing, for debate and journalism competitions. I remember thinking how very rural and backwards it all seemed. I remember the spiral staircase, and how we went up and down, up and down, up and down, with seemingly nowhere else to go.

Today I’m here again. The spiral staircase is, too, but precious little else is the same. The décor has been updated, the 70s allure long gone and the people walking through seem less bucolic and more like the people in my own little suburban world. And they seem young; even the adults who are probably an assorted crew of professors, administrative employees and the like seem to me like they’re fresh. Shiny. Happy to be where they are.

I’m sitting here, nervously waiting for Adam. I left him in Custer Hall, Room 405, with his new roomate. They are organizing their dorm room, lofting beds, getting to know each other. He was eager for me to go, but I know he’ll come find me when he needs something. Trying to write profiles is a futile exercise as I sit here, thankful that with the changes at FHSU came a Starbucks, and failing miserably at trying to not think about the fact that this time, when I leave, he won’t be coming with me.

I can’t help but think how similar this is to when I had him, some 16 years and two months ago. How I went to the hospital, a clean and welcoming place to be sure, but definitely not home. How those halls, too, were filled with professionals who assured me that everything was going to be just fine. Full of other expectant parents and family, pacing the halls and stealing anxious glances at others as they waited, pondering what might come next.

The waiting; that’s what’s getting me now. I’m back to that place where I’m waiting to be ready. Waiting to be needed. Naive of what this new definition of ‘mom’ really means and completely unsure of whether or not I can handle it.

I’m waiting for that voice in my head to say ‘push!!’ and scoot him into another world, only this one is full of people I don’t know, places I haven’t been and “opportunities I won’t vet. Knowing that once I have finished that final push, instead of a nurse laying him on my stomach to see for the first time, I’ll be turning him back over to the world, trusting that they will cherish and protect him as much as I’ve tried to.

“A handful of patience is worth more than a bushel of brains”–Dutch proverb.