One of my proudest parenting moments happened over Christmas break. I was driving back to my parent’s house from Portland, Oregon, with Quinn. We had just spent the evening there with a girlfriend of mine, her daughter, and her daughter’s best friend. I coaxed Quinn into going to Portland with me, and we had the best time. On the drive home, he told me he wasn’t happy at UCSC. He went into all the reasons why as I listened and absorbed what he was saying. I don’t know what he expected me to say, but the words that came out of my mouth were, “I don’t want you to spend the next four years unhappy with where you’re at, so let’s figure out a new plan. You don’t have to stay at that school.” At that moment, I didn’t feel panicked that my child wanted to leave college; I just felt grateful that Quinn knew he could come to Woody and me with his feelings. He knew we would help him and support his decision. There was never a moment of, “Too bad, you made a choice, and you are sticking it out.” It was more like, “If this doesn’t feel right, fuck it, life’s too short.” Quinn finished his last quarter at UCSC in March and has decided to go live in NYC to get hands-on experience in the film industry. He applied to different colleges for the fall and got accepted, but he hasn’t decided whether to go. If he ends up loving New York and he wants to stay, we won’t force him to return to school.
I attribute so much in my life to Ronan dying; because it changed my outlook on everything. Everything I thought I knew to be true was all a fucking sham because, at any moment, it could all be taken away in the form of how the fuck does a three-year-old get cancer and die? It happens all the time, our lives here could be gone in the blink of an eye, but instead of doing what makes us happy, we should conform to society’s standards. Nope. Not anymore. No fucking way. My approach has become while we are here, we should be chasing our dreams and following our hearts, even if that takes us off the “right path.” The only correct path is the one that sets our souls on fire, and right now, that has led Quinn to New York. I know my child, inside and out, and that wild spirit of his lives inside me. I sent him off this morning with a letter, and one of the things I told him was I hope he finds the magic is looking for in New York, but if he doesn’t, we will figure out something else. I am happy to let him roam and explore all of his options. I am happy to let him experience life on his terms, and it’s an honor to stand by his side, guiding him in whatever way I can. One more reason I am so over the moon with Quinn’s decision is because of the incredible network of people I have in New York who are going above and beyond to help in this transition. Quinn has the best Auntie’s in the world, and I cannot tell you how lucky I feel to have people out there who love him like he is their own.
Here’s to my favorite city, new adventures, and knowing you’ve raised a kid who is unbelievable in so many ways. This also gives me a great excuse to visit New York more, which I plan to take full advantage of until I can figure out a way to live there permanently😉
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