Whew it has been a whirlwind at the Miles’ house lately!
My oldest finished her sophomore year of college, my second oldest graduated from high school, and my youngest completed his first year of high school with flying colors. But it was all of the graduation excitement that seemed to take the most energy. Not because of sending out invitations, thank you notes, planning parties and getting through the graduation ceremony. But because my heart was being stretched to the brink.
When did I get old enough to have a child who is a Junior in college? I declare it seems like yesterday I was a Junior myself. And when did I get old enough for my second baby girl to graduate from high school? And the fact that I only have three years left until my little boy graduates and the empty nest syndrome becomes a reality in my own home is something my mind cannot comprehend. How time flies when you’re having fun.
In fact, life goes so fast, it’s scary – as my mom always says. But it’s true. One day we are graduating from high school, and the next day we have kids who are graduating?! As I was thinking about this recently, I remembered a book I used to read to my children when they were little, and maybe you remember it too, called Love You Forever.
It starts with a picture of a young woman holding her newborn son, and while looking at him lovingly, she sings the following song:
“I’ll love you forever
I’ll like you for always
As long as I’m living
My baby you’ll be.”
When my kids were little, I thought it was such a sweet book. Now that they are bigger, it’s even sweeter. It exemplifies the love of a parent, and the love of a child for their parent, despite the years that pass and the roles that change. And that kind of love never changes, especially if God is in the mix.
Last week as we prepared to watch my sweet little Katybug walk across the stage in her gown and cords and accept her high school diploma, it was a time filled with a mix of emotions, knowing that I was facing the season of letting another one of my babies spread her wings and fly. Although part of me wants to clip her wings and keep her safely by my side, the other part of me knows that God has great plans for her, and what a joy it will be to see what God is going to do in her and through her in the coming year as she embarks on her college career.
Maybe you are facing a hard change in your parenting season right now. Maybe your first child, or your last, is starting kindergarten. Maybe your first child, or your last, is graduating from high school, or even college. Maybe your grown kids are starting families of their own and seemingly need their parents less and less.
If your heart is struggling with letting your baby go right now, in one way or another, I just want you to know you’re not alone. It’s normal to want to keep your baby tucked safely under wing, yet at the same time, long to see them grow and blossom and flourish in a new season of life, without you. It’s normal to shed tears of joy, and tears of sadness, and maybe even bust out in tears without any warning or over something extremely silly. Trust me. Been there, done that and have the t-shirt.
I pray if you are facing a new season of life, that God fills your heart with peace and excitement, and fills the spaces in your heart that need to be filled and soothed today. I pray for the next generation and that God will continue to build a generation of faith through the moms that are willing to shed tears through the smiles while letting go of the reigns, and taking comfort in knowing that we have taught them well and that God will be holding their hand as they march towards their future.
Life changes, but the love of a child and the love a mom has for her child never does. No matter how old they get, they will always be our babies, and one day they will understand it themselves as they see first hand the circle of life and how the mother/child bond of love truly is forever.
The winner’s of last week giveaways of two copies of Stressed-Less Living are: