My daughter just finished her sophomore year in college. COLLEGE, PEOPLE. And my son is almost finished with his sophomore year in high school. Next year I will have 2 juniors in school. And that just feels weird.
My daughter came home after exams for 6 days before she had to head back to Oxford. She has a job there and is on rush team for her sorority, so she has “stuff” to do over there all summer. She won’t be home this summer for the first time ever in her life. And that just feels weird.
In approximately 18 days my 15 year old son will turn 16 and hopefully pass the Alabama driving test so that he can finally drive a car by himself. He’s one of the youngest in his grade, so he’s had the distinct honor and privilege of being dropped off and picked up by his parents far longer than his friends. But after that first Friday in June, he’ll be able to drive himself where he needs to go. And that just feels weird.
The older I get, the weirder life becomes. Yes, my children have grown and changed and we’ve morphed from t-ball and cheerleading to homecoming, prom and even college, but for most of their lives they have lived under this roof and been driven from here to there by me, my husband, my parents or another trusted parent. So when they get to the point when they can drive and have an apartment and not come home for the summer….
Well that just feels weird.
Too often I get stuck on the weird part. I long for days gone by, what I call simpler times and my son calls “the good ‘ol days.” (For him, the good ‘ol days means the days when I picked him up from pre-school at noon, he came home and enjoyed a lunch consisting of a PB&J sandwich, some fruit and a glass of milk while watching Tom & Jerry. He would then have a 1-man football game in the front yard until it was time to pick up his sister from “big school.” Agreed, my son – those were the good ‘ol days.)
And I know, I need to embrace the “Now.” I need to accept what is and what is not and what is coming because time stands still for no man… or momma.
It’s just that no one can prepare you for the weirdness. Oh they can try, as I am trying to do now. I’m trying to prepare all you mommas (and daddies) out there that while you’re sitting at home with your 5 and 9 year olds tucked into their beds all safe and sound, that one day… one day all too soon, it’s just gonna feel weird.
So what do we do? Wallow in our weirdness? Well I guess that’s one solution, but I don’t think that story will have a very happy ending. So instead of sinking into the abyss of days gone by, I suggest learning from these words found in Ecclesiastes 3:1-8:
“There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens:
a time to be born and a time to die,
a time to plant and a time to uproot
a time to kill and a time to heal,
a time to tear down and a time to build,
a time to weep and a time to laugh,
a time to mourn and a time to dance,
a time to scatter stones and a time to gather them,
a time to embrace and a time to refrain from embracing,
a time to search and a time to give up,
a time to keep and a time to throw away,
a time to tear and a time to mend,
a time to be silent and a time to speak,
a time to love and a time to hate,
a time for war and a time for peace.”
And yes, a time to feel weird.
There’s a time for everything. For me, there was a time to get married and a time to have children. There was a time to tuck my children into bed, and a time to give them a curfew. There was a time to attend the 2nd grade Valentine’s party and a time to watch my daughter in the prom lead-out. There was a time to watch my son play in his first 9-hole golf tournament, and a time to watch him win his first 18-hole event. There was a time to watch my daughter walk down the aisle at he high school graduation, and God willing, there will be a time to watch her walk down the wedding aisle.
So embrace the time God has given you – all of it – even when it just feels weird.