I cannot believe another one of my babies is a high school graduate. This time of celebration can prove to be quite tricky for a momma! After all, it’s what we’ve worked toward! It is for sure a momentous occasion! A huge accomplishment! I think back to the beginning with this particular baby. Taking her to pre-school. After a few weeks of many tears, the director informed me that she bent down to Audrey one day to say, “That’s enough. You have to stop crying. Your mom will be back later.” She was 3. We never went back to pre-school after that day.
She was my one baby who didn’t long to be surrounded by other people. I tried to embrace this difference. Although you wouldn’t know it by observing her social manner today! She has fallen into and cultivated a really great relationship with an awesome group of kiddos and I’ve said it time and time again, for this, we are beyond thankful!
No one warned me, when I was having the time of my life giving birth to them (not even kidding, the 4 best days of my life), that letting them go 18 years later would be beyond excruciating. Or perhaps I was so enamored with this new creation that I didn’t hear any negative words from any wise onlookers. But it seems no one said,
“Sure, this is fun! She’s totally dependent on you! She thinks you literally put the moon in the sky for her!”
No one explained the different phases of raising this precious child. No one stood over my hospital bed and said, “There will be a day that she’s the only one not invited to a birthday party”
and you’ll want to slash the tires of the parent responsible, Or “There will be a day when she looks you in the eyes (way too soon) and says ‘I can’t wait to move out of this house!'”
There will be many sick days, many tears, many heartaches, many screaming fits of rage. There will be tragedies, and times of celebration. She will have joy and she will have pain. The worst of it is, YOU will be the source of some of that pain!
I remember holding her in the hospital ( I remember this with all four of them) thinking, I will make your life so amazing! I will give you everything you need and always love you big!
Then just like that, truly, just like that, she’s flying away. My time with her under my wing has expired. And I’m left thinking, “Wait! But that’s not all! I have so much more to teach you and SO much more to re-teach you! So many mistakes to correct! So much more to instill into your heart!”
I’m left standing in the dust of the whirlwind wondering… Will she love the Lord with all her heart? Did I?
Will she seek after Him as if He’s more precious than gold? Did I?
Will she trust in Him and give Him everything? Did I?
Will she follow His commandments in a world that is seemingly straying from Him more and more? Will she fight the good fight through the tough times all the way to the end? These are the questions that keep me up at night. But, then I realize that in these worries, I’m asking God to get up off His thrown, so I can sit there and oversee the future (not to mention the past).
So, she’s not in my nest anymore. She’s flying on her own. The false sense of control can’t even be imagined anymore. And her being the 3rd, I know enough to know how confusing the next few months will be for me. How excited and, at the same time, devastated I will be to take her to Nashville in August. How thankful I am to get to watch her enter into this next phase of her life, but also petrified of what’s to come. I know that I will be on my knees most days begging God to watch over her, to draw her near, to mark her as His own.
It’s so hard to consciously remember that she was God’s before she was mine. That He literally created her. That He is the one who decided to put this blue-eyed beauty in a family of green and brown-eyed, dark headed people. She is His. She always has been and He longs for her heart more than I do! Is it possible? He says it is so… I can’t fathom, but I trust.
At least in this breath, I trust. It will, perhaps, be different in an hour. I’ll have to regroup and refocus my gaze on my Lord, as I walk across these treacherous waters. Lord, sustain me. Sustain her. Sustain us.
I am thankful. I’m thankful for all of you who have poured into her life to this point. I’m even thankful for the sicknesses as I was given the opportunity to hold her close and love on her. I’m thankful for the mean girls who hurt her in different ways, as it gave me the chance to speak truth about who she is and whose she is. I’m thankful for her independent spirit that is ready to fly away, as it gives me peace to know that she is becoming a woman of great strength.
Most of all I’m so thankful for God’s grace that covers all of my foolish selfish mistakes in her 18 years. He is perfect, even when I am not. I am thankful.
Happy Family Friday! Hug em tight!