Not So Empty Nest Days

Cherishing the days past while moving towards the days ahead, BHG

The Last Stretch

I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. 2 Timothy 4:7

 

I’m not sure why this is the Scripture to use or if this will speak to anyone other than myself, but here I go. I have not been writing as normal since the beginning of the school year. The reason is very specific. My last child is a senior and it is hitting me harder than I thought… Like I seriously have moments when I wonder if this is real and even more honestly, I wish it weren’t.

My youngest daughter and I are on our last stretch as her being a minor, her being in school and soon after that, her being under my roof (you all know that declaration made to kids). It’s not so much that I am sad that she is growing up, quite the contrary, I am super excited to see what God has next for her and so forever grateful that i was chosen to walk this with her and unlike seven of her school mates, she has lived to see it. The sadness comes with having an empty nest. I know that God will fill my vats and keep me doing His work, but I am merely being honest when I say I am going to miss my babies…

On a trend of being honest, there are so many things I wish I could redo. I wish there was a button to push where not only would we go back in time but it would be the ultimate do over where the previous was erased… sort of like when you are recording your voice mail recording. I wish the times when I wasn’t as patient, I could go back and see what I saw directly after flying off my well-worn handle. I wish I could do over a warning that things would get worse if they kept the way they were going with love and concern instead of trying to pump fear and condemnation. I wish I could go back and handle each time a child teased or bullied one of my three… or an adult for that matter…. maybe some hands on help there. But most of all, I wish all the times I was depressed and wasting time chasing a man or money or freedom from “these kids” that I had embraced them and gotten on the floor to play with them a little more. I also wish that I could go back and tell my younger self that the “perfect moms” that seemedĀ  to beĀ DIY queens with clean homes, no, immaculate homes while toddlers seemed to change themselves and children seemed to be suspended in space while they did their work…. that is not realistic for every mom and it doesn’t have to be. I wish I could tell my young mommy self that I can be Mary and enjoy what will not be there soon instead of being Martha and worrying about things that will remain (like dirty dishes and clothes).

My time of being physical mommy (they still call me that) is almost up and I see instances where God has allowed for me to implant His wisdom in areas that should already have it. And for that, I am grateful. But I still wish for earlier days, knowing what I know now and doing what we do now.

What I can say is that God knew what He was doing when He planned for these three to walk this hard, sometimes lonesome, most days frustrated but nevertheless rewarding journey of being their single mama. He knew that they would teach me and they have. I can say (with tears as I finish this) that I am almost finished with this race, I have fought (mostly the kids) the good fight and I am keeping the faith that this next chapter in our lives will be well worth the turning of a new page. I leave with this…. young mammas heed a not too old mammas advice, you cannot do it all. Definitely teach them to care for their things, clean after themselves and watch out for each other (OH! and do NOT forget the manners) but love them as they are… not who you perceived them to be when you carried them. God’s plans are way bigger than yours and He loves them so much more. Trust Him and love them and take the time to show it.finish the race

 

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