Adjusting my sails, going with the flow, riding the tide, it is what it is. This is certainly my life theme the last 14 months. There have been so many changes, so many emotions, and so many unwelcomed edits to my life plan. For an unorganized person, you’d think I’d be better at flying by the seat of my pants (Metaphor usage record-holder and proud of it).
The truth is, change continues to be a struggle for me. When B graduated from college in December, she moved home to work and save money until law school. I knew it would be temporary, and yet now that the time is here, I am having a hard time letting go. It’s been comforting having her home. It’s been nice having adult conversations with someone in the house. And it’s been helpful having her pick up a gallon of milk or a diet coke on the way home. Our family and our home has felt less empty with her here. But, it’s my job to let her fly. And so I must.
She signed a lease in Chicago last weekend. The time is near now. She’ll be packing (and hopefully cleaning) all of her things and starting her new life adventure. She’ll begin law school in just a few months, and soon our family will feel so small again. I couldn’t be more excited for her, but I will really miss having her nearby. And the kids will miss her too.
Don’t get me wrong though, I’m SO excited for her. But that joy is shared with sadness. I can’t help but think how very proud her Dad would have been of his girl. He would have better advice for her, a calmer way of delivering important life lessons as she gets ready to embark on a new city, new school, new everything. He would have calmed me too. He was good medicine for the Mom anxieties that can accidentally suffocate a daughter. I can only pray that she feels him with her at every turn. That she hears his advice in her mind, believes in herself the way he believed in her, and marches forward with the memory of how very much he loved her.
Her Dad helped teach her about perseverance. He modeled it so well for everyone that knew him. When things were beyond difficult, he dove deep into faith. He prayed and he fought. And that’s what B will do, too. When her young adult life becomes overwhelming, I pray she will remember how her Dad dealt with his challenges. I pray when things are great, that she’ll share her joy and give thanks. And when things feel devastating and insurmountable, that she’ll know where to seek comfort and that she’ll find the gratitude moments there as well.
When she was about four or five years old, she held up her fists in a fighting position and yelled, “You want a piece of meat?!” As she jokingly challenged me to a “fight.” She may have gotten the words wrong (we aren’t ALL gifted with the metaphors), but she certainly understood and appreciated the importance of approaching life with humor mixed with stubborn tenacity. That’s how I want her to tackle the challenges before her now, too. A new city, new apartment, difficult law classes, the eventual BAR exam….”You want a piece of meat?!”
I still can’t believe this day has come. It happened so fast. Life happens so fast. We really do need to make the most of each breath we are given.
So, B…Go out there and change the world, baby girl. You were born for this. God made you with a great plan in mind for your life. Trust in Him every step of the way. Believe in His love for you whether you’re down in the pits or flying high on joy. Believe in my love for you too. And believe in yourself. You’re going to do great things, and I couldn’t be more proud of you.
Now go….FLY….but come visit the nest once in awhile, ok?
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