I package up the box of SAT vocabulary flash cards and “to do” lists that show Mackenzie’s more serious side. There are tubes of paints and blank canvas that get moved to the dining room table, two old cameras, and a small soft cover called “An Artist’s Guide to Choosing an Art School.” Just where has the time gone, I ask.
I think about her cotton candy pink room and how it will soon be transformed into a new sanctuary. Before the school year starts, Mackenzie's room will come to life with a fresh coat of paint she’ll choose when she returns home. I’m looking forward to tackling that project together.
I think about discarding some of Mackenzie’s treasures — with a “she’ll never know” attitude since I know it will be easier to put the room back together again with less clutter. I stop because I simply can’t do it. The treasures are hers and hers alone. I’ll wait for her to make those choices and hope she can part with some of them.
I close the door with a final glance. My eye catches the Native American “dream catcher” she has tied to her bedpost. I hope that stays just where it is as her reminder to follow her own path. I’m happy Mackenzie is already doing so, and wonder where her new dreams will take her.
I’m looking forward to having those conversations — in her new room, of course.