This portion of This Crazy Trip has been put into place because Matt wanted to move to California to help a friend raise and show her Siberian Huskies and to take care of, as she said, "about 92 Ball Pythons." Matt is our youngest child. He's 22, not a baby and yet, hasn't really been an adult yet, I suppose. Letting him go has been hard and yet, I'm proud of him for deciding what he wants and going for it.
Yesterday, we drove the final 631 miles of our trip, leaving Kassy and the boys in Arizona and driving through southern California and up through the Inland Empire to Winton, near Merced and Fresno. That is where I stepped out of the car and left my man-child in the hands of other people.
I'm filled with sorrow and happiness. I'm filled with pride and despair. I'm looking forward to hearing his adventures and trying to figure out how life will go without having him around all the time.
This was the purpose of our trip and now that its here, I'm very grateful that my sister Linda was here to pick me up. She hugged me and bought me ice cream and got us a hotel room so we didn't have to drive two more hours - plus she had clients to see in the area, so that was good. And now I have four days with family and friends in California before hopping on a train that will start me on my journey home.
Our last travel day was filled with beautiful scenery, massive rain storms (who says it doesn't rain in California? It does this year!!) and recollections of home. Matt got sillier and giddier the closer we got to Winton. We listened to the same songs over and over again on the Alt Rock station on Matt's XM radio. I'm not sure I'll ever get Silvertongue by Young the Giant out of my brain. LOL
But as we drove further north, especially driving through the Tehachapi area, it felt more and more like home to me. I recognized more places that I visited as a child. I felt more relaxed and happy, brushing away the realizations that I was leaving my baby there in a few hours.
So, as we got to Winton and I met Krystal and her family (including the four-legged and slithery ones), I enjoyed talking with them and learning more about them. I felt comfortable with them. I felt like they cared about their animals and were knowledgeable about caring for them and showing the dogs. And then, I found out that they were also Latter-day Saints! How could Matt have kept that from me? It was weird, but as soon as I knew that, I knew more about the kind of people that they are and my heart was eased. Matt got in trouble for not telling me that from all sides. LOL
So, today, even though I'm tearing up a bit now writing about it, I'm happy for him. I like Krystal and Laura, her mom; and her daughter Klarissa and her sister Maleeseea (sorry if I butchered the spelling there.) I hope and pray that this move will be a great one for them and that Matt will find what he needs for his life here.
Letting go of my baby is hard. Watching him step out and grow up is wonderful.