I know it's not really autumn yet, but today feels like a change in seasons. My oldest daughter is off at college, jumping in lakes with her clothes on and who knows what all else, and my youngest child is entering her senior year of high school.
I remember it well, the days that they were just young, needing me for everything. As I dressed and bathed them and got up in the middle of the night for feedings, time seemed to drag on. And then one day, they are out on their own. Leaving the nest that I spent so many years preparing and perfecting for them.
It's an ending... it's a loss. I grieve the loss of the ability to protect my babies. And yet, as the seasons have continued to change, it has been a gradual process. My job has been to make them independent. To stand on their own two feet and offer themselves to the world, as whole as possible. So now, as I have completed the process (well are we ever really done... my mom would say no) in one daughter and fill in the cracks for my second child, I do think about what's next.
I have plans actually. I'm never really at a loss of interests or things that I want to do and tackle. I rather enjoy thinking about the next phase of my life where I can be more self-centered and start focusing on some of the things that I haven't been able to pursue in the busyness of raising a family. It's encouraging to know that there are doors to be opened and windows to crack and feed the new winds of change.
So here's my soul encouragement today..... When things end, it makes room in our life for new experiences. When relationships end, we meet new people who add a different element into our lives. When children move on, not only do their worlds expand, but yours do too if you are open to it. When one soul leaves this world, a new one comes.
There is a saying in New England, "If you don't like the weather, wait a few minutes". It's really that way with life too. Change will continue to come. We can be glad that we don't live in a stagnant world. How boring that would be!
Be encouraged! There are new opportunities around every corner just waiting for you. Open your eyes today and cherish that truth... it's good for the soul!