...will never be the same.
Tonight is the last night my daughter sleeps under my roof before leaving for college. I recall the first night we brought her home from the hospital. The baby monitor was on full blast. I heard every sigh, snuffle and sneeze. I heard her uneven newborn breaths as her lungs were still adjusting to life in this new world. Just when I thought she wasn't breathing, then the hiccoughing sounds of rapid succession of air into her tiny lungs gave me a sense of relief. I dozed fitfully through the night, hypervigilant for any irregularity or problem.There was so much we didn't know, so much we could never foresee. No baby book can tell you all you need to know.
At a certain point it's just time to jump in. To take a step forward. To jump off the cliff of tight control. Sure there is the security of a good routine, but usually it's false because life can change at any moment. A sudden fever, vomit in the van, yellow poo all up the behind just as you're ready to walk into church. A tearful re-teaching of the math lesson she didn't get. An unexpected diagnosis. Tearful sobs brought on by the stinging words of a friend. The uncertainty in her eyes as she wonders if she's captivating enough to capture the heart of a wonderful man some day.
All the little moments you wonder if she's going to be okay.
What a confidence I am privileged to have to know that Christ works all things together for His good. What a joy to know we can take all the complexities of parenting to the Father. What a deep and abiding blessing to know His love covers a multitude of sins and mistakes.
That night we brought her home, there was of course a sense of knowing that life as I knew it would never be the same. And tonight, that sense returns once again. And though I know she'll come home again and have many more nights under my roof, it still won't be quite the same.
And isn't that a good thing after all? There is so much fullness of life to live, I'd never want to hold her back and keep life the same forever.
It's just two ends of the parenting spectrum I'm feeling today. And what a blessing it's been. What a privilege--to be a parent.
I humbly thank you my God and Father. And I praise you for the confidence in knowing she's in your care.