In New Jersey, public schools are closed the Thursday and Friday of election week. It makes a perfect time to go out of town and, since my daughter is thinking about going to college in Washington D.C., we decided to take a little trip. Somehow I forgot that first part— midterm elections just happened. And there is more unsettled energy than usual here. But at the same time that there are big political events occurring, there are smaller, more personal concerns for me. With my son in college already, my daughter potentially leaving next fall means my nest will be empty. It’s a great feeling that she is embracing the chaos of Washington and hoping to get into international relations. But not to see her beautiful face every day or hear her funny stories is a change that gives me pause. The bittersweet of having ambitious, independent kids is they leave to make their own way. Until then, I’m enjoying the moments, even in the craziness that is Washington, because I have this amazing girl by my side.