No matter what stage of life you are in as a mom, there are so many times or situations in life you find yourself saying goodbye.
Goodbye to the last time being pregnant. Farewell to the last time you will change a diaper. No more sweet smelling babies, and off to the terrible twos and threes. Saying goodbye as your baby goes off to camp for a week. Kissing your little’s forehead as he leaves the nest and goes off to Kindergarten. Fast forward 12 years and saying goodbye as your baby leaves the nest and goes off to college.
As you say goodbye, you are a mom at a crossroads.
You are a mom at a place in your life that is changing in some way. A point in your life that requires you to make a choice to embrace the new, savor the memories of the past, and take on the next role of mom for the future.
Regardless of what stage your goodbye is, you are ALWAYS MOM, and there is always a new role to serve as a mom. We have a choice to grow, mature, and adapt to what our children need at every stage in life. Whether they are babies dependent upon you for everything or married with children depending on you for your listening ear, encouraging heart, or wise counsel, we have to stay in tune and pray we can serve our children and be equipped at every stage.
For me as I write this post, I just sent my one and only baby (little boy) off to Kindergarten. For the first six years of my son’s life I knew my purpose. I had such a clear picture of what I was created to be.
I was here to be mom of a baby who needed me home with him, provide therapies, sacrifice career, friends, time, and life to be his biggest advocate every minute I was awake. This time was such a blessing I didn’t deserve but was very grateful to have even with all the many days I struggled to just survive mentally. He needed me for survival, and now there is a new stage of motherhood I am needed for. It is a role of love and support and guidance to let his little light shine, not mine! It is time for me to say goodbye to that stage and ADAPT and EMBRACE a new stage of life.
Easier said than done.
I have no idea what this new stage looks like, nor do I even have an answer to my friends and family on how my days will be filled exactly. I do know one thing, and that is how blessed I am to be a mom of a child who is spreading his wings and gaining independence. I am so thankful for him and this next stage of growth. Honestly, I am scared for this next stage and whether or not I can be the mom he needs me to be. I am a nurturer by heart, and the baby stage of dependency and snuggles, and big role of caregiver, is natural for me. I want to be just as good a mom at this next stage, but I question how exactly!
A beautiful embrace of the next stage….
I just witnessed my aunt say goodbye to her middle daughter as she moved her six hours from home into a dorm and sent her off to college. As I watched the process, a lightbulb went off. Her role of mom is just as important now as it was when her daughter was four. The love and support of course looks completely different, but I am so thankful to have witnessed the beauty of that relationship and how my aunt supported, guided, and comforted. Most importantly, she sacrificially loved her daughter while both were entering a new stage and uncharted territory.
As I still wonder the uncertainty of what lies ahead for the days to come, I also am still trying to figure out how I fill my time. Do I go back to work? Do I serve more at church and my son’s school? I am not sure what the answers are and have not been spiritually led to have a clear direction on that next step. I do know my first role is to serve our Creator, and at the end of the day, my purpose to serve Him is to first be wife, mom, and a strong support for my family. Because of this my short term purpose is to be there for my son after school (whether he needs therapy, communication, play, or just needs to be loved) and my husband after work.
So until I have an answer and feel spiritually led on which direction to take at this crossroads, I am choosing to say HELLO today.
I am saying Hello.
I am saying hello and welcoming a new path for me, for our family, and for my son. It’s time to embrace the change and walk the unknown with joy and excitement as we journey together. When it comes down to it I am just thankful to be a mom and won’t take for granted that special role. My heart breaks for those women who struggle with infertility, and while I am blessed with one, I would like more and it just hasn’t been an option for our family. I want to savor every moment and cling to the past because it very well could be my last. I want to celebrate the past but not dwell so much that it takes away the joy from the future.
I don’t want to just say goodbye to each stage, but to say hello and embrace with open arms the present and future path God has in store for me as a mom and for our family. I hope I can serve my son and his needs at each stage and allow myself to be the parent and mom he needs me to be, not the one I want to be!