Love You Forever

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.

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The winner’s of last week giveaways of two copies of Stressed-Less Living are:

Tena, who posted at 2014/06/05 at 12:20 pm and Lindsey, who posted at 2014/06/06 at 12:53 am

Tracie

Comments

  1. Sara W says

    Just dropped off my oldest at camp yesterday. I won’t see or talk to him until Saturday morning. He’s never been gone this long away from home before and it’s hard! I miss him already. This could be a really long week. Thanks for sharing this and the reassurance that I am not alone.

  2. Paige says

    Oh Traci! Big fat tears on this one! My youngest is starting Kindergarten this fall and I am mourning endings while trying to celebrate the new beginnings! How many more mornings will I get the thump thump thump of steps down the hallway and down the stairs way too early. How many more mornings will I get the sleepy head nestled on my shoulder as I pick him up to say good morning. His legs are getting longer and longer. He is getting heavier and his head is barely fitting in the crook of my neck. Oh man. Thank you so much for this post. I needed the encouragement today. That its ok to bust out in tears at random times. THANK YOU, fellow mama.

  3. Beth A. says

    Yep! My baby, our girl just got married and moved across the country….. She’s the you get of 3 and the last one to be married. It’s a “weird” transition. I haven’t quite embraced it yet…… And the “Love You Forever” book….. I can’t read it without crying. My kids used to love to get me to read it to them and watch me cry!!! Some people’s kids!!! Love and Prayers, Tracie! Thank you for sharing your heart!

  4. Beth E says

    Thank you for sharing this. My one and only child is embarking on her journey to kindergarten in a few months and I am really struggling!!! I have been an emotional basket case. I’m thankful that she’s healthy and able to start this new chapter in life, but I am also scared to death to let her go, and my heart aches for those days gone by that went way too fast.

  5. tmiles says

    It’s nice to hear from some fellow moms who can relate! Thanks for all your comments. They each made me laugh and want to shed a tear. But I held it back. :) That’s a start!

  6. says

    Having the children and raising them is the easy part. The hard part is the letting go. That is why it is so important to savor every moment when your children are young, even if they are driving you crazy. You will yearn for those moments when they leave the nest. I have five children, two of them are married. My eldest son was in the Marines and stayed across country after he got out to marry his sweetheart and I only get to see him twice a year for the past five years or so. My middle daughter is in college and my next son is graduating from high school. My youngest is 15 and homeschooled so I am lucky I spend more time with her than I might if she was in school. I must confess I am not looking forward to the end of homeschooling and the beginning of the empty nest.

  7. Kelly says

    Thank you especially for the prayer at the end. I am a single mom with one son, who is graduating from high school this year, and attending university next September. My son and I are very close, and it is very hard to let go, but he is a smart and sensible young man with a heart for God’s will, so I know deep down that he will make good choices in life. He has life threatening allergies, which is an extra worry, but he is very careful and although God has not healed my son, I have seen God’s protection in this area. I need to trust more that God will take care of my son, and also take care of me in the way of giving me peace and freedom from loneliness and anxiety.

  8. Lori says

    This past month has been a challenging one for me as well when it comes to my changing roles as a parent. My daughter graduated from college in May and just a few short weeks after that, my son graduated from high school. . . my last, my baby boy. I know God has a plan for both of their lives, but sometimes I fear what the plan is for mine. Like so many other mommies, I have been that first and foremost. I have worked in the schools they have attended and had summers and holidays off with them as well. Sporting events have been my social life with their friends’ parents as my friends. They have been the center of my home, my life, my world for so very long I just cannot imagine how changing that will be good in any way at this point. I am excited and proud to watch them continue to learn and grow in their faith, in their relationships with others and find areas of service. It is this thought that is getting me through this very emotional time. I trust that God will continue to protect them and keep them in His care, guiding them all the way and that He will one day bless them each with a Christian spouse and a family to share their lives with, just as He has done for me. Thank you for allowing this mama to share her heart and for sharing yours as well.

  9. Avi says

    Tracy, I am a single teenage mom, I am 20 and I had my baby when I was fifteen.I have been battling with my time for school, church, family, and friends. This post really touched my heart. Last week Friday, my 4-year-old daughter had her “graduation” type-of-thing at her daycare. She is going to pre-k this Fall. On weekdays, I work office hours 9-5 and I am blessed because I have my very supportive mom to bring my baby and pick her up from school every day. But despite of the wonderful help, I sometimes feel guilty because I feel like I don’t have enough time for her. I just knew about the graduation the night before and I felt like I was a bad mom. During the ceremony, she did not know that I will be there, and as she walk towards the chairs, I saw a huge smile on her face while she tries to hold everything in and walk slowly. My heart melted. I thought about all the times that I was not there for her and how my presence can affect her fully. (Im trying not to shed tears while writing this) But I totally agree, there should be no time wasted, it goes by fast and every single second with your baby gives a meaning to your existence.

  10. Bridgette says

    Thank you Tracy for sharing. I am a mother of two, one boy one girl. I watched my girl graduated from
    preschool last year, and soon about to watch my boy complete primary school, next year 2015.

    I too cannot imagine where the time went. I look forward to him starting high school and praying for the
    right fit as it relates to high school.

    My prayer is that God will lead me and guide me as he has led and guided you. I love the photo by the way.
    beautiful!

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