I think it's strange that we wait until someone dies to have a celebration of life. Why don't we do it sooner? Often? Every day? Let's start right now....Read More
It shouldn’t have been a surprise because this is what God does. He takes something ordinary and makes it holy. You know, ordinary people like a girl named Mary. Ordinary things like wine. Bread. Fish. And, yes, even ice cream......Read More
What's your summer happy place? The one that makes your heart feel alive and your soul feel at home, the spot that's a perfect fit in a laid back, July sort of way? Come along and I'll take you to mine. It might just become yours, too.....Read More
Remembering the pain of our own deep, jagged loss can be the very thing that encourages someone else who has lost a dear one. May this bring you or someone you know comfort and peace. If you don't need it now, put it away for later because death is an inevitable part of life......Read More
Dead heading isn't just for flower pots. It's important in our lives, too. Give this video some thought.....Read More
What the hell was I thinking? I ask myself the same question every year when the Stanley Cup winners hoist the champions' trophy high over their heads. But there can be redemption for all of us, even when we make the stupidest mistakes...
If it's the end of an era in your life or your child's, you'll want to read this... and honor the feelings that come with transitions.....Read More
The birth of our children is our birth, too, as we enter into a new life. In the dark cocoon of night, this is how I mark my own birth day, a private celebration for one, on the eve of my sons' birthdays.....Read More
Looking for that special something for Mom? Mothers from east to west have weighed in and this is what we'd like today. You won't need your wallet, but you will need to read this if you want to make her Mother's Day the best yet....Read More
What's the best gift for a beloved matriarch this Mother's Day? Come in close, moms. I have an idea....Read More
It's incredible how, with the handy work of your mind, bad can become better. Today, a different way of sharing words... in video form....Read More
Short and sweet today, Underdogs. But big. Really big.Read More
If you haven't joined us on Facebook, there are a lot of us there waiting for you. Come say hello and find even more goodies waiting that'll give you a boost of goodness. And who doesn't need more of that? Oh, and breathe it in. Breathe it out. Life and Love are our gifts.Read More
The ancient Easter story relates to every one of us, whether Christian or not. It's the story of life and it's teeming with instructions for getting through life's hardest days.....Read More
I wonder how the mob scene happened. How could people be so blind and so cruel? Yet we all stand right there with them. This day reminds us to step out of the crowd......Read More
My older son and his friends call it “future tripping,” worrying about what’s ahead for them as they journey through young adulthood. Let me tell you, I’m way past their stage, but I’m on one heck of a trip.
My youngest, who’s about to turn fourteen, will start high school in the fall. Since last summer, he has talked about going to boarding school. Maybe it was seeing his unofficial cousins thrive where they board or hearing his dad talk about his cherished memories there. Maybe it’s born of craving independence, wanting new experiences, and forging a different path that's all his own.
All of that makes perfect sense, but I’ve never thought boarding school was in our future. Not really. I saw it as more of my boy’s passing fancy and the application process was a bit of a lark that I thought would peter out like a car running on fumes. But this car is now running on rocket fuel. The boy has been accepted to an a fabulous school where he will have opportunities he wouldn't have here at home. It’s good news, right? Sure. For him. But it's hard for me.
I love this job of raising kids more than I loved anything else I've done, including interviewing Oprah during my TV years. This is the most important job I will ever do and (most days) I love it. I’m the mom who was always bummed to see the end of summer. While my friends (good moms who are, perhaps, slightly more well adjusted), were ready to say, “Good riddance,” shove the kids out of the car and speed away on the first day day of school, I slowly drifted away, hesitant to relinquish them. And the recent boarding school acceptance just sent the degree of end-of-summer difficulty to an all time high.
So, here I am, wallowing in a valley. I spent the last twenty-four hours overwhelmed by sadness, the anticipation of loss, and imagined uncertainty about what I’ll do, how I’ll find joy in a kid-less house that’s way too quiet and newfound free time that’s way too abundant for this mama’s heart. After nineteen years of life with kids, I'm not ready to be without them.
I imagine on the other side of the mountain lost time without this boy. I think about the car ride conversations we won’t have, breakfasts we won't eat together, not saying goodnight to him, not being the one who sees when he’s feeling down and can offer an ear or (hopefully) sound advice and missing out on his little victories that may not make it to a phone call. There is a long list of things I’ll miss. And then there’s the aftermath of dropping him off. In my crystal ball, I see my husband and I staring at each other without kids in the middle and I wonder what we’ll talk about and how we’ll handle this new phase of life.
I have known this tall, jagged mountain before me would come eventually. It does for all of us. Maybe you're already there or you're doing your own form of future tripping. I got my first taste of it several months ago when my oldest left and that was really rough. But this is my baby and it's much earlier than I expected to leg go, which hurts in a different way.
Let me pause here and say, yes, I know. These feelings are all about me. Full on. And I am well aware I risk sounding whiney and ingrateful. Of course I’m thrilled for my boy. This is an incredible opportunity for him to experience things he would not, and grow in ways he could not here at home. We are beyond blessed to even consider this option, albeit with scrimping and saving. And without a doubt, I know this is the path he’s supposed to take. I have prayed about this, asking God to open the door where our boy could best grow into the young man he was created to be and this door opened in a way that undeniably directs him to go through it. So I know it’s the right thing and I am beyond excited for him. But it's still hard to let go.
In the midst of this sadness and future tripping, I prayed. And God walked in on my pity party with a comforting thought that maybe you can use, too, for whatever future fears you might have:
You can’t see the other side of the mountain when you’re standing in the valley.
It's impossible. No matter how much you think you know about what's over there on the other side, you and I have no clue. Not really.
I love these profound revelations. Even though they’re obvious, they're easy to lose site of, like a lighthouse on the shore unseen by the captain who stands with his face turned to black sky instead of toward the beam of light.
As I pondered these words, I began to think of all the hard times when doubt and fear reigned in my valleys past. And I remembered the incredible things that appeared on the other side of the mountains I faced, things I could never have imagined in the midst of difficult circumstances. The truth is we never really know what’s on the other side, but we can somehow get through whatever awaits us.
No doubt, our September farewell will be sad. My climb up Mount Letting Go will be filled with unfamiliar, rugged terrain, and lots of tears. But I will look up to God and have to believe that loss creates space for something I cannot even begin to imagine. And I will anticipate, not just with the sadness that is a very real part of letting go, but also with the expectation that something good is coming on the other side of the mountain, not just for my son, but for me, too.
(If you like what you read here, please share, like or leave a comment below. It's kinda like throwing a quarter into the basket of the guy playing guitar on the town square. Except this doesn't cost you anything.)
Everyone has a dream? So, what's yours? Going after the goal you most want requires determination and inspiration. And today, before the sun was up, I found a good dose of both....Read More
I had a little revelation today. At a time when a lot of folks are ready to argue and diminish one another, take a different approach. You'll be surprised by what you get in return. I certainly was.....Read More
Reader. Writer. Like most things in life, it doesn't work unless we're in it together. Have I mentioned how much I appreciate you being here? Because I do.