Leaving The Nest

The Early Show, CBS News Correspondent Tracy Smith visited the Stevens' house, where Diane and Errick were moving their twin daughters, Acacia and Sabrina, to college
CBS/The Early Show
Experts say there are two basic rules that apply when a child leaves or launches from the nest: It will hurt, and it will get better.

But Diane Stevens will do more than sit around and worry about how her girls are spending her money. Stevens says she finally gets a chance to do some volunteer work.

CBS News Correspondent Tracy Smith visited the Stevens' house, where Diane and Errick were moving their twin daughters, Acacia and Sabrina, to college.

"I'm really nervous," said Errick.

Diane jokes that her husband is just nervous about seeing the bill for sending his two daughters to college.

It's all part of the ritual marking the end of a child's childhood, even if dad still does most of the heavy lifting. And, mom still does most of the work.

The night before, in her bed, Acacia felt anything but sad.

"It's not really as sad as I want it to be," she said. "Maybe I'll cry tomorrow. I'm just so excited."

But for the parents, it's all different.

"It's all part of growing up," Errick said. "You just got to let them go at some point. This is it. This is that time. It hurts, but this is that time."

That is the right attitude, according to experts.

Laura Kastner and Jennifer Wyatt wrote a book, "The Launching Years," on the subject.

Kastner suggested parents read and talk to other parents about the college transition to prepare better for it.

"There will be bumps," Kastner said.

The Stevens have made peace with the fact that their babies are maturing, but they're still worried about losing contact with their daughters.

"For me, having two girls, I wouldn't feel as apprehensive if it was two boys," Errick said. "It's them being out on their own and me not being there to protect them. I always keep them by my side and keep my arm around them and keep them at arms' length."

Errick, the protective father, said he'll be waiting by the phone if his daughters ever need him.

The Stevens said their goodbyes. But mom's voice may be ringing in the girls' heads for years to come.

With one last farewell, Diane had a message to her daughters before leaving them in their new home: "Do well, because my money is a terrible thing to waste."