Monday, June 6, 2011

Mixed Emotions

It's Graduation week! I don't have a kiddo graduating this year but so many of my friends do. I feel for the whirlwind of excitement and apprehension building in their spirits during this time. So much planning and hard work have finally come to fruition!
I wrote a story about this time of life about a year ago and I'd like to share it with you today. If you've ever invested even part of your life into a child, you'll relate. But be sure to stay with it until the end...

Mixed Emotions
The bags were packed and waiting by the door. The house was a buzz of activity with friends and family stopping in to say their goodbyes. My kids were leaving for college today. Jillian and Joel were starting the next chapter of their lives at Texas A&M.

As I watch the constant stream of people, my mind drifts back to the days when the kids were young. I remember all the warm summer afternoons playing catch with Joel in the backyard and staying up all night when he broke his arm during the little league game. Even after he fell asleep I couldn't bear to leave his side in case he woke up afraid or in pain.

Jillian and I had spent countless hours taking long walks and hanging out in her room listening to music. Jilli was so shy and never had much to say, but when she wanted to talk she would always come to me. I remember her first dance, first love and first heartache. She became a young woman right before my eyes, where had the time gone?

A windstorm of memories fills my mind as I try not to let my emotions show. I don't want to let on that my heart breaks a little more every time I think of them leaving. My life has revolved around them for so long, I can't imagine not seeing them after school or putting them to bed at night.

Before I know it, the well wishers are gone and it's time for Joel and Jillian to leave. As the bags get loaded into the car, Jilli buries her face in my neck and I feel her tear soaked cheek.

“I'm going to miss you so much, I wish you could come with me!”
“C'mon Jilli. We'll be back at Thanksgiving. We've gotta go.” Joel reassures his sister then gives me a smile and quick peck on the forehead.

Within moments the house is empty and I'm watching the car pull out of the driveway. My sorrow gives way to overwhelming pride. My kids have become adults and I am so lucky to be their dog!

Congratulations to all of our graduates for their accomplishment and to the parents for their faith and perseverance. May God claim all the glory! The best is yet to come...

Be blessed,
Jennifer

For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” Jeremiah 29:11

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