Old Habits Die Hard
I pushed my cart through Aldi today, and I stopped – as I always do – at the end of aisle three where all the gluten-free items are kept. I reached for a box of granola bars and my hand froze mid-air.
I don’t need gluten-free granola bars anymore because the person who eats them is about 100 miles west of here.
When Life Changes
Yesterday, we dropped our youngest son off at college. I didn’t cry when I hugged him good-bye. Instead, my smile was so big it bordered on cheesy.
But today, the reality crept up on me.
The thing is, I’m not sure exactly how to feel. I LOVED college. Every new quarter was like a gift waiting to be unwrapped (and yes, I realize I am the world’s biggest nerd). I loved being with other creatives and learning from each other. I loved talking to my professors. I loved all the what-ifs after college.
And I’m excited and grateful and giddy that my son gets to experience those same things.
Life is Always Changing
I’ve had quite a few people come up and get that soft, sympathetic look and then ask me in a low voice, “How are you doing, Mom?”
And I feel a teensy bit guilty that I’m not falling apart because if I really loved my kid, shouldn’t I be a melted mess now that he’s gone?
It’s not that I don’t miss Brody because I do, but I’m not sad he’s gone.
This is the Goal
Instead, I feel excited for him, for all the possibilities and opportunities that lay before him. And I don’t feel any less his mother because he is away at college.
Instead, I feel kind of like I’ve graduated too. I remember when I brought each of my boys home from the hospital, and the absolute terror I felt when it hit me that it was all up to me (and the Coach, of course), to keep these small people alive and help them to grow and thrive and become functioning adults.
And it kind of seemed impossible that I was capable of all that.
Yet, here I am with two young men who are good guys, who love the Lord, and who I enjoy spending time with.
I wish I could take the credit, but I can’t. Instead, my boys are a testament to the fact that God is strongest where we are weakest. He equips us to do what we don’t feel capable to do, and He fills in the gaps that we can’t.
So, for me, seeing my youngest head off to college to study something he loves and is gifted in, it feels like I’ve graduated, too.
We’ve come to the bend in the road, as Anne Shirley would say, and I am excited to see what lies beyond it.