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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: Enter (02/27/06)

By Elaine Taylor


I love reading my eldest son's bedroom door. Every square inch of it is covered in paper: favorite cartoon strips from the newspaper (most yellowed with age), Snoopy, Scooby Doo and Sponge Bob Squarepants stickers, pictures of illustrious icons such as Einstein, Elvis and President Ronald Reagan, postcards from South America and Africa, drawings from his three younger sisters, bumper stickers, concert ticket stubs, a poster of whales he received from the zoo when he was thirteen, and so much more. My absolute favorite is a black and white sticker decorated with skull and crossbones with the dire message of “Enter at your own risk”. Every time I read it, it makes me laugh.

Usually, when you read such a statement, you think of danger, or, in the case of a teen age boy's room, possbile contained chaos. Not so, with my son. His bedroom door is his outlet for total disorganized abandonment. His room, on the other hand, is extremely neat and clean. He did not receive this trait from his father. I am usually orderly, but in a cozy, slightly cluttered way. My son is spartan.

His room has not changed much since we first decorated it years before in the early days of our marriage. It's a small room, but large enough to contain an antique twin bed that we discovered at a yard sale, an upright dresser and mirror that my parents brought back from Europe, a black, wooden rocking chair, a non-descript, tiny table serving as a night stand and a bookshelf that once held my father's books when he was my son's age. There is a framed tissue drawing of a boy in a boat that my husband drew when he was younger. Two pictures of bi-planes fly on the opposite wall from the ever sailing boy and boat. In the bookcase resides classics from Tolkien, Wells, London and the like. On the night stand resides a much thumbed through Bible. A prom picture showing my smiling son and his high school sweetheart is on proud display atop the dresser. No socks, or books, or shoes litter the floor. No empty glasses or late night bowls of cereal are hiding under the bed. The closet shows garments hanging in pressed harmony.

I have entered, at my own risk, to sit and rock; to remember what it was like becoming a mother for the first time. Bringing home my baby boy; nursing in this very rocker. Singing lullabyes, dreaming big dreams; planning the future for this bright eyed bundle. It doesn't seem that long ago.
Tomorrow, he leaves for college. His suitcases are already packed and wait silently by the door. I am by no means about to become an empty nester; not with three girls under twelve still to raise. But...they say parents begin the process of letting go the moment they bring their child into this world. It's a gradual thing; crawling, walking, dressing themselves, drinking from a sippy cup, potty training, the first day of kindergarten, and then... it becomes faster and faster; sleepovers away from home, church camp, basketball camp, driver's ed, first job at the pizza place, missionary trip to Mexico, girlfriends, SAT's, college applications...

The sound of car doors stirs me from my reverie. My husband, son and daughters have finally returned from shopping for last minute college necessities. I am sure Cheesy Poofs (his favorite snack) were on the list. I realize it's almost time to eat and I haven't even started dinner. I gently close the bedroom door and make my way to the kichen to welcome my family home.

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This article has been read 576 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Lynda Schultz 03/06/06
Beautifully done.
James Clem 03/07/06
ORU must be a college (?)
Well written and structured. Nice job with the topic.
terri tiffany03/08/06
Very good story. I could relate. Loved your descriptions. Good voice throughout.
Theresa Kissinger03/08/06
I like the way this is written, I was in the rocking chair in my children's rooms reliving the experience of their taking leave. ORU is the reason I read this...Oral Roberts University. Good surrogate ground!