It happened so fast after waiting and waiting. Waiting to turn 13. Waiting for the day to come when she could start her birthday adventure.
Waiting for the inevitable delay.
And then squeezing in a kiss, a hug, a photo as she walked onto the walkway thingy and walking away and trying not to cry.
Three days. She’d be gone for three days. That’s it. And those days will go fast. She has an epic weekend planned with an epic human, and we have everything else going on here as we always do.
This was it, her first time flying alone. Her first time to L.A., initials for a city she couldn’t say too many times in the days leading up to the trip. Kind of, just, her first real independent moments.
For like, 90 minutes. That’s about how long the flight was. We met a nice mom before boarding who promised to look after her on the plane, and she ended up sitting with her during the flight to keep her company.
I can only imagine what they talked about over Josie’s snacks of Slim Jims and Takis.
Her bonus brother held her hand as we took the escalator to the gates, worried for her, worried in general about the prospect of her traveling alone. And he admitted to feeling sad after she disappeared into the crowd on the walkway thingy.
What the heck are those called, anyway?
My brain is in protection mode, making sure I don’t think too hard about anything at the moment. Because today was a moment.
I was sad, too. But so excited for her at the same time. Also so proud. Getting the call that she made it, and was headed out for sushi somewhere near Hollywood – was also a moment.
Before she left, I told her I was jealous she was leaving. The beach sounded nice.
“But, we’ll just wait for Chile.”
That’s what I told her, and she lit right up. It’s one of her dream destinations. That, and Thailand.
Her first solo flight, I’m sure, won’t be her last. It’s just the one that comes with ALL the emotions. For me.