My boy plowed through the front door of my condo this morning, fairly early by most standards. He finished up school yesterday, took his last final, and drove up from Champaign. I was on the phone with a customer as he tromped past, tossed his backpack on the living room floor while laying his guitar case in front of the fireplace, proceeded to flop on my old leather couch. He loves that couch and rightfully so. It’s soft and fluffy, perfect for naps. I finished my call, said hello, welcomed him home. Nate grunted a hello, said he had a good trip, then drifted off into a nap, his light snoring almost a distraction while I worked. Shortly thereafter, he shuffled into the bathroom for a quick shower and into his bedroom for more sleep. I didn’t see him again until around 5 this evening.

I guess school wore him out. Although I think I remember a little what it was like to be 22. I slept quite a bit then.

This is probably my last time living with my son. He is officially done with school, interviewing for jobs, trying to decide where he is going to live. Soon, I won’t have a place for him to stay, since I am selling my condo this February-March. When Lisa and I marry at the end of March, I am moving into her condo, a short move since she lives in the building next door. I spent the last two Saturdays cleaning out her garage, hoping to clear enough space for the few things I am going to bring with me. Most importantly, there needs to be enough room in her garage for my bikes.

Life’s chapter is turning yet another page. Four years ago, the chapter that began was a dramatic one, a dramatic change. Today’s chapter has both children on their own — one a newlywed teaching music at a school overseas, the other beginning his own story. And I am starting a new story, hopeful and eager to see what is in store.

Sometimes I worry what my children think about their father, now that the dust has settled from the divorce. It’s not easy for them to see me moving on, I am sure. Neither is expressing any anger, both seem to accept it. Tonight, Nate asked me where the wedding ceremony is going to be, was interested as I told him about the little old white church out in the country we are using for the ceremony. I want to ask him to stand up with me for the ceremony, but am a little afraid that will be too much for him. If I am going to ask him, it probably should be this week, since he leaves this Sunday to visit his sister and will be gone for the holidays.

So, my quiet little nest is invaded for the next few days.