Saturday, August 27, 2011

Rearranging the Furniture


One of my daughters recently posted on her Facebook page that she had a sudden awareness that things will "never be the same." Knowing my daughter as I do, I knew that this was not a some sort of cryptic message, lament about impending doom, or teenage melodramatics. I knew that she was pondering something deep and moving as she was coming to realizations about life and growing up.

The funny thing is, that feeling isn't limited to a teenager realizing that she and those around her are growing up and moving on. As we get ready to move on to different phases of life, or if something major happens in our life plans - things change. I think we all get to feeling that way... that things will never be the same.

Change is Continual

The truth of the matter is that life is a series of constant changes and movements. It never does really stay the same. Children grow and move out of house and away from home. Many friends come into our lives for a season and then move on as we welcome other friends in. Some stay with us for a lifetime but even those relationships are in a constant state of change. Loved ones are with us, shape us, form us, and then pass on. Jobs, skills, and interests wax and wane through our years. Whether we want it to or not, time, life, the world, even we are in a constant state of change.

However, we can take some comfort in some of the constants.

Our Life as A Home

If we look at our lives like a home that we are building for our selves to inhabit, we can see all these things that change as pieces of furniture to put into that house. The pieces are heirlooms, pieces of comfort, pieces of whimsical enjoyment, and practical and logical pieces. Some are steeped in tradition and represent our values and attitudes. Some provided for us and our children. Some we outgrew, others have lasted and grown with us. Many of the pieces are prominently displayed for a lifetime, while others are tucked away in the attic or basement. Regardless of how these pieces look now, where they are placed or stored, they are all real and have some sort of lasting presence. The change is not a disappearance of the furniture, it is simply a rearranging of it.

Life is Not Static

Life is not static. Life is dynamic, ever evolving and changing. Change is not a disappearance of the pieces, it is simply them moving around. We could benefit from not mourning the loss of what was, but by looking at the change of a rearranging of the furniture in our lives.

What do you think?

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Letting Them Go and Watching Them Fly

Letting Go

I like to think that my writing serves and inspirational purpose for those that read it. I think in many ways it does. But truth be told, often, I am writing to myself. What I am writing now, I hope will be inspirational or comforting to others, But, admittedly, it is cathartic. It is to help me through a particular phase in my life. Many of you may be in the phase too.

This phase of life is about letting go - specifically, letting kids go.


My girls are now 22, 17, and 14. They are all at milestones in their lives. My oldest is moving out of state for a promotion with her employer. My middle daughter and youngest daughter are a senior and freshman in high school. All of these things are milestones for them.

These milestones are the beginnings of chapters in their lives that are teaching them who and how to be in the world. The are growing, exploring, and taking in the world around them as they are introduced to new ides and new people. They are in a part of their life when they can truly write the words on the pages that make up a huge part of their identity. Opportunities are theirs, unencumbered by obligations and anchors to geographical locations. It is a time when they can spread their wings and take in the wonderful world around them.

These are milestones for me as well. As proud as I am of them, for me in my role as mom, the milestones represent the closing of chapters in my life. Selfishly, I am sad for me that their dependence on me is changing. It is painful as I have to let a part of "me" evolve and change into who they are meant to be, apart from me. It means that I have to evolve into a person that I am not used to being - a person without three other beings in my presence and under my responsibility 24 hours a day. As they discover who they are, I have to rediscover who I am.

Pain and Joy

Although this is hard for me, I would never trade their growth and independence for my own desire to avoid the changes that come along with their blossoming into who they are in the world. God designed us to be want for our children the things that make them complete. It isn't easy, and it isn't fun. It is tough, but I will get through it. I am a mom, and that is what we moms do. We dig in, and we get the job done. What I can take solace in is that the pain of letting them go will be soothed by the joy of watching them fly.

What do you think?