Sunday, February 11, 2007



Horizons

It looks like we're in for a snowstorm - anywhere from 3 to 12 inches is the prediction. Actually, I love snowstorms - I kind of miss them. Ohio doesn't get nearly as much snow as Michigan does, and most of the winter here is spent looking at brown grass rather than white snow. I smile when the kids say "oh wow, look at all that snow" - and there might be two inches on the ground!

Things here are so-so. Just lots of changes to think through, adjust to, and accept. Transitioning to a new stage of life this time around seems to be more difficult than before - and I wonder if that's because I'm older now, or if it's because this transition is truly harder than the other ones.

DQ turns 16 in two weeks. In just two short years, she'll be leaving for college! I didn't get the chance to prepare for TP's leaving in advance because we were so focused on her health, so when the time came for her to actually leave last fall, it came as a real shock to me. I don't think that I helped TP as much as I should have for all the changes she would go through, and I know I didn't prepare myself in advance to help me get through it all. But, I am hoping that over the course of the next two years, I'll be able to prepare myself and prepare DQ for the changes which will happen in both of our lives when she leaves the nest.

These transitions in our lives challenge us - and we either grow in our relationships with each other and with God, or we become bitter and angry over leaving behind a certain period in our lives which we've thoroughly enjoyed, or we get "stuck" in our old patterns of behavior rather than changing or adapting to our new lives. I admit I'm stumbling - I'm trying to grow in light of these changes, but there are times that I try desperately to hold on to the old rather than embrace the new. At times, I find myself with tears in my eyes as I remember when the girls were little- and I catch my breath because it hurts to think things are never going to be the same as they used to be, with their little girl giggles and their words of "you're the best mommy ever". I truly do know in my head that there are wonderful times ahead for me (hey, the best is yet to come, right?) - but my heart still longs for the simpler times of having both girls safely tucked into their beds at night.

So, while the snow is swirling around me tomorrow, I will remember the simpler times when I was a child and how the snow would mesmerize me. I would stare at it and wonder what my life would be like when I would be older. A part of that mystery has been solved, for I have lived many years - but there is still much more to discover about what God has in store for me. And I look forward to (albeit, at times, a bit reluctantly) seeing what this next stage of my life will bring.

9 Comments:

At 10:33 PM, Anonymous nettie said...

I'd miss snowstorms, only I've never experienced them. Somehow I think I'd be woefully unprepared, given that when we get our "wintry mixes", I am usually sans icescraper and beat said icy stuff off the windshield with a shoe.

 
At 6:07 AM, Blogger ukok said...

Valerie,

you often have this way of expressing my feelings much more succinctly than I possibly could, and that's so amazing and I'm happy that you do so.

I know my kids are only 15 and 11 years of age, but with my daughters' 16th birthdy approaching this coming November, I am looking backwards on our shared history, aghast at how the time has so quickly passed.

I want to reach out and grab moments from the years gone by, moments that my appalling memory won't hold on to...before they fade forever. I too know that I have to embrace the present and look forward to the future, but I remember my children's innocence, their trusting, their total dependance upon me...and I know that while I should be happy that they are finding their own feet, fighting their own battles...a part of me just wants to time travel back to the place when all they wanted, knew or needed, was me.

I know it is selfish and the problem is mine to deal with. I just have to hope that I have loved them well enough in these years, that they will want me to be a part of their lives when they are free from the constraints of their childhood environment.

I have some heartaches coming, I just know it. How do you cope when they leave you? I just don't know how I'll deal with it, raising the kid's alone all these years has bought us so close to one another.

May God give me the strength to deal with what lies ahead.

God Bless you Valerie!

(((hugs and encouragement and prayers ascending)))

 
At 6:54 PM, Blogger My Kid's Mom said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

 
At 7:01 PM, Blogger My Kid's Mom said...

Hi Nettie! We've had quite a bit of snow today (Tuesday) with more on the way. I have a feeling you'd like this snowstorm - as long as you were nice and warm and cozy inside, like I am! :-)

Deb - What a wonderful comment. I have no doubt that your kids will remain close to you as they enter adulthood. I guess I don't really "cope" with it, so much as just learning how to accept it. It's tough at times, and there are times when I find myself in tears when memories come rushing in or when I wish I could have that time back when they were kids. Thanks for your comments - I appreciate you and our friendship!

 
At 7:25 PM, Blogger Julana said...

We're hearing sleet against the window, too. No school today, and probably none tomorrow. We missed two days last week, for the cold.

I know what you mean about those changes. I'm expecting I'll have some hard ones ahead, too. God bless you.

 
At 8:37 PM, Blogger Shawnda said...

Oh my wow....you always have a way of bringing me to tears realizing how much I need to hang on to these moments with my little ones and not let them pass by too quickly!!! Days with little ones can be so hard, but things don't get easier from what I'm learning....just different! You still are "the best mommy ever" - and if your kiddos aren't telling you that now, they will be in a few years! : )

Hang in there, Val!!! The Lord is going to use this season! We have a couple in our care group that are new empty nesters, and they are really struggling!!! It's been quite the growing experience for them! I just can't even picture that season....it seems so far away, but from you and others....I'm realizing it's way too close! Thanks for your continual honesty and perspective!!! love ya!

 
At 8:27 AM, Anonymous c.a. Marks said...

Hi Valerie - first, I hope you are staying dry and warm!!

Secondly, the little support group sounds fabulous!! I know I need it, and not just for the Lenten season either, I would hope it would continue for forever! You're the best.

 
At 10:08 PM, Blogger Rosemary Bogdan said...

Oh I know these feelings all too well. I have found it easier to adjust after you live through the first one leaving and come out OK on the other side. When my oldest left home he got on a plane to enter one of the service academies. He had never been away from home for more than a week. He was in the equivalent of boot camp for the first three weeks and we couldn't even call him. He turned 18 during those three weeks and I couldn't even wish him a happy birthday. I said a rosary for him every day. That was 4 years ago. I survived. He survived. It's wonderful when he's home but I've accepted that he's on his way now to his own life. Still, we talk pretty often.

 
At 11:05 PM, Blogger Gina Burgess said...

Remember Paul, sweet friend. Pushing forward to the exciting things before you and yours, lean on God and He will make your paths straight.
Love you,
gb

 

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