I often used to wonder to myself if my constant reminding, begging and harping would ever bear fruit in my teens. How often do you remind them to brush their teeth, take out their contacts before bed and pick up their wet towels? Does God’s Word really say ANYTHING about picking up their dirty clothes? HONESTLY? Why yes, yes it does. Join me over at Lifeway’s Parenting Teens Magazine and read more.
I’m sitting here forcing myself to write.
God and I have this conversation going on. (indulge me.. this is what it sounds like in my spirit)
“I need you to open yourself up and share and encourage other mommas.” – God
“I want to honor you and encourage others, but this is stinkin’ hard. I feel like stomping my feet and saying no.” – Dedra
“I need you to open yourself up and share and encourage other mommas.” – God
“Seriously? I’m just a chick… I want to honor you, but this is really, stinkin’ hard. Especially right now.” – Dedra
“I need you to open yourself up, share and encourage other mommas and let MY Glory be revealed.” – God
“(Bows head and shakes head) Yes sir, I want to do that too. Is it okay to do it through these tears and mourning?” – Dedra
“I need you to open yourself up and reveal that I AM the ONLY WAY.” – God
It’s been two and three weeks since I have gotten these three settled and on their way.
The transition into empty nesting needs to take its time.
But, it doesn’t.
It comes fast and furious and the feathers fly around as the dust settles. I’m chirping and singing as I watch them fly out and settle, but the nest seems so empty and quiet and dusty..
I am finding the need to just simply sit and breathe and watch. He’s directing me to look back on the 21+ years of parenting these sweet chicks and give Him all the glory. He’s asking me to take all of it, good and bad, easy and hard and share His glory with others.
Because it’s true, He is the only Way. He’s been the ONLY ONE that has never left…. These sweet chicks.. they are just borrowed and my job now is to watch and sing and let them fly.
So that’s what I am doing during this transition of life called empty nesting, watching, praising and surrendering… What’s He asking you to surrender today?
“Be strong. Take courage. Don’t be intimidated. Don’t give them a second thought because God, your God, is striding ahead of you. He’s right there with you. He won’t let you down; he won’t leave you.” – Deuteronomy 31:6
I shared Monday that the seasons are a changing quickly…
and I’m am holding fast to so many of His promises…
and soaking it all in….every moment … breathing…
the emotions are sweet, bitter and come swiftly taking over without notice…
and then a smile starts to creep across my face as He gently reminds me…
of the enormous blessing of being present daily in their lives…
believing that I become more brave as I am down on my knees or face more frequently…
Thank You, Abba for the reminder to breathe and soak it all in…
These are such exciting times…
I’ve been thinking a lot about it lately. I’ve been praying about how to send off my three kiddos well.
Within the next two weeks, I am moving my son back to Auburn for his sophomore year in college and my twin daughters to Union University for their freshman year. I am so excited for them. I am incredibly proud of them.
I’m excited about what the future holds for them. I’m excited about the opportunity they will have to spread their wings and have their own “home away from home”. I’m excited about opportunities they will have to make lasting and wonderful relationships. I get excited to watch them think, ponder and dream about their future.
I am proud of their desire to learn more, become more, reach out more. I am proud of the way they are handling their emotions (albeit difficult to watch). I am proud of the way they are stumbling and struggling.
As a momma, my job is to send them off well. I need to pray, encourage, support, counsel and scoot them out of the nest gently. I need to NOT send them mixed messages. (Trust me.. jokingly, I started trying to bribe my youngest two to stay home… and realized how bad it was for them. I stopped. Thanks UU! ) I need to make sure they understand that mom and dad are going to be just fine.
More than fine. We are going to be wonderful.
Mom is going to cry and be sad. THAT IS NORMAL. There is no guilt in crying and grieving over a season of parenting that changes. After being a hands on mom for over 20 years , it’s hard to change roles but it’s not bad. It’s surreal, it’s exhilirating, it’s daunting, it’s sad but it is really, really good. You know why?
Because we have completed the job set before us. I’m standing firm on the promises that He has given me.
Train up a child in the way he should go; even when he is old he will not depart from it.
– Proverbs 22:6 ESV
We will not hide them from their children, but tell to the coming generation the glorious deeds of the LORD, and his might, and the wonders that he has done. – Psalm 78:4 ESV
For I have chosen him, that he may command his children and his household after him to keep the way of the LORD by doing righteousness and justice, so that the LORD may bring to Abraham what he has promised him. – Genesis 18:19 ESV
All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, equipped for every good work.
– 2 Timothy 3:16-17 ESV
God has blessed me with three very different and amazing children to raise and after all these years, I am blessed to watch them fly.
How do you let go and send off well? I’d love to hear your encouragement!
“Let them give thanks to the LORD for his unfailing love and his wonderful deeds for me, for he satisfies the thirsty and fills the hungry with good things” Psalm 107:8-9
Today my youngest children turn 18. In a week they graduate from high school. In a month, they register for college. It’s a whole new ballgame. Even though I experienced this season last year, it’s a whole new ballgame because they are my youngest. They are my girls. My DH (dear husband) and I are so proud of them. They are sweet and kind and full of joy and LOVE big. It’s been an honor and privilege to be their Mom and to be able to pour into their lives daily. In a few more months, they will be standing on their own two feet and making their way at Union University. Grateful, honored, proud, thankful, blessed… all these things I am. But above any of those things.. I am in awe of how they love Jesus and how they are following hard after Him. Has nothing to do with DH or I, but everything to do with how BIG our God is. He gets all the glory. DH and I just tried really hard every day.. and He did it in spite of ourselves.
SO… grab a tissue and rejoice with me…
Iggy & Sissy.. Dad & I love you to the moon, beyond and back. We are so incredibly proud of the women you are becoming and so excited about your futures. We are celebrating with you, praying for you and cheering you on. Our hearts are full and time went by way too quickly…
Disclaimer: He very much dislikes the label “special needs”. We respect it. We honor it. For other severe disabilities. For other kiddos/adults. You see, in our house, we all have special needs and we think other people do too.
He was not my first pregnancy, but was my first child carried to term. I’d gone through four other miscarriages/ectopic pregnancies so when we got past the first trimester I thought it was a home run. Labor was induced and my body didn’t like it AT ALL. Griffin was born via emergency c-section weighing in at 9 lbs 8 oz and measured 21.5″. It was one of the best days of my life.
Our first year and a half was great. I didn’t notice anything odd. He spoke in simple phrases on schedule, was walking pretty much on time. Dr. visits were predictable and uneventful. He was a happy, sweet kid. I didn’t notice any of the signs. My twins (yes, you read that correctly) were born one month before Griffin turned two. In the fall of that year he started a mother’s day out program at a local church twice a week and his disposition changed pretty quickly.
For the rest of the story, visit Giving Up on Perfect...