photo 1My baby graduated from high school on Saturday. How is that even possible?  Wasn’t it just yesterday that I brought all 9lbs 10oz of him home from the hospital?

He’s headed to Moody Bible Institute in the fall to pursue a degree in Communications.  He had originally planned on living at home for the next four years to attend community college and then finish up at the state university in our town. Then he decided to apply to Moody just days before the Spring application deadline.

When he got his acceptance letter my empty nest date moved from four years from now to three months from now.

Wait a minute!  I’m not ready for this!

Motherhood is synonymous with change.  Our job is to work ourselves out of a job. 

You had a baby three months ago and now she’s a toddler.

Your preschooler is headed to kindergarten next year.

Your 2nd grader will be a 3rd grader in a few months.

All your kids are now double digit ages.

You’ll have one in junior high next year.

Your 17-year-old is looking more like a young man than the boy who entered high school 3 years ago.

Things are a’changin right before your very eyes.

Sometimes there’s grief associated with change.  I’m experiencing some of that.  I have loved raising my family.  At the same time, I’ve been doing that for nearly 30 years!  I’m open to the possibilities and promises of the next season of life.

As we navigate the changes of parenthood, we have to resist becoming so entangled in the role that we feel rejected when our kids move on to the next season of their life. The changes in motherhood are actually a gain, rather than a loss. There’s progress to be celebrated! 

Your 4 year old dresses herself? Celebrate her independence! 

Your grade-schooler doesn’t ask for help with homework as much as he did last year? Celebrate his increasing responsibility!

Your junior higher spends alot of time with her best friend? Celebrate her ability to make friendships!

Your highschooler suddenly has a social life that includes missing family dinner on occasion or spending evenings with a special someone?  Celebrate the carefree years of high school that will never be returned to him! 

You’ve got one heading to college, or trade school, or getting a job and moving out on their own very soon? Celebrate their ability to spread their wings and fly! 

Our ability to navigate the changes of motherhood is directly affected by our perspective and the lens in which we view the change. Can we view it as a gain, rather than a loss?

If there’s one thing I’ve learned launching five little birds out of the nest, it’s that our kids always need their mom….no matter how old they are.  You and I are never really out of a job.

What about you? What changes are you navigating right now with your kids? 

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