I have a sweet cousin who is starting college today who moved away from home for the first time over the weekend. Her family is very excited for her, but emotional to see her go. As all parents are, I suppose. Facebook has been a buzz with everyone's new stages. Starting Kindergarten all the way to a last year in college, parents are shedding tears over time gone by so quickly. And I'm not sure what is so special about this year that I'm suddenly starting to pay attention. Kids graduate and move away every year, but for some reason this year I'm very aware of the emotion that is involved with seeing your child take another step into real adulthood.
My baby isn't even 2, but I'm already thinking about what I want to be like verses what I'll likely be like when he moves away to college. Talk about a complete lack of control! :) And mourning? Yeah, I bet there will be mourning. I think I'm mourning right now in preparation! But once all of that is flushed out, more or less, I want to be able to say some things about my time with him. I want to know that the past 18 years were spent preparing him and supporting him to be a great young man, capable and willing to bring good things to those around him, with integrity, respect and virtue. Because if that's not my goal, then what am I doing? As much as it feels like it on a bad day, I am not having and raising children to give me hugs and to be my best friend. With God's grace and blessings, I'm attempting to raise men and women who will soon become husbands and wives, parents, employees, owners, leaders, coaches, the list goes on.
I am such an intensely emotional person that it is easy for me to get caught up in all the feelings. Parenting seems to be no different. Writing this out has helped me frame another goal for my role as a mother. Whatever opportunities or time you have with someone, in a certain place, what kind of things do you want to be able to say about it when it's over? Try writing down what you'd like that time period to look like. Even though we likely won't reach it exactly, it gives us better direction.
So, be it Kindergarten, football season, or retirement, how can you really live in it and make the most of your time in this season?