Looking back, I proclaim 2011 to have been the Year of the Roller Coaster. There were so many twists and turns through my life journey that it’s difficult to even remember all of them. Truthfully, the year was filled with much angst, pain, panic attacks, and poor health — but also with love, life, and peace that defies human understanding. I still do not know how I mustered the courage to power through some of the tasks set before me. If someone had told me last January that by the end of the year I would have successfully had a hysterectomy, I would never have believed it.
If someone told me that I would turn in my “homeschooling mom” credentials by the beginning of 2012, I would never have believed that, either. I am living proof of this verse:
In his heart a man plans his course,
but the LORD determines his steps.
Beginning tomorrow, my identity as “homeschool mom” will be replaced with “school mom.” Frankly, I feel a bit lost. Here’s a snapshot of my girl back in our early days of homeschooling. She’s holding a watermelon we grew in our garden:
Do you see those dimples and those sweet, chubby cheeks? Oh, be still my heart.
Now, I blinked my eyes one time, and suddenly here she is….transformed into a young lady of 13:
Time isn’t just marching on. It feels like time is racing ahead faster than I can keep up!
I’ve heard from all my daughter’s teachers — every one of them has been encouraging and kind. But the fact remains that someone else will determine the curriculum. Someone else will determine my daughter’s grades. Someone else will hear her jokes, watch her smile, and be a guiding influence as she grows and matures into the lovely young woman God has created. All I can say is…thank goodness her school only meets three days a week rather than five…or else I would be a mess! This is a bigger transition, probably, for me, than it will be for her. I have abdicated some of my responsibility — MOST of my responsibility — and that is scary. I won’t be there to remind her to put her name on her paper. She hasn’t had to have proper headings on her papers because, well, she’s been the only student now for six years! Mostly I’ll just miss being in the same room with her, sharing her space, feasting my eyes on this strange, beautiful girl the Lord somehow shaped out of me and my sweet hubby. She’s too old and too big to sit in mamma’s lap, but she does still like to give us generous hugs. Now that she is taller than me, she curls her head on my shoulder and pats my back. The back patting has been a routine of hers since infancy! Now someone else will get the back pats — at least during school hours.
Is it obvious that I am not necessarily going into this transition with rainbows and doves and a smiling heart? More like kicking and screaming, probably.
But parents do what is best for their children. The Lord has shown me that it’s time.
This will be the year that my daughter will fly out of the nest.
As for me? I’m scared to death, but I shall wait on the Lord. Perhaps this will be the year that I, too, will spread my wings, try something new, write a novel, take a class, spread a little joy…full steam ahead!