Finding a New Rhythm
The gifts were ready the day before my youngest daughter’s 20th birthday. No scrambling around, stuffing gifts in bags at the last minute. I was a pro at this by now. After all, 5 kids times each of their ages informs me that I have done this 107 times for my children. Let alone, other precious family members. I had even completed all of my college work the night before and planned to order her favorite food after church. The day was set aside to enjoy family time. This would be the best birthday ever . . . or not. Sometimes in our every day and our special moments, we realize that things change, and finding a new rhythm is not so easy.
Finding a New Rhythm—Spreading Our Wings
Suddenly on that day both mother and daughter were in tears on the screened porch. It was hard to put words to it. But it was a part of growing up. She was about to spread her wings and we both could feel the sadness and the joy in that prospect. She was growing increasingly uncomfortable in our nest, and this is a normal part of growing up and into independence. And her spreading her wings also made space for me to spread mine a bit more.
Finding a New Rhythm—With Our Savior
It isn’t as if I don’t want my baby girl to grow up (ok, writing baby girl there is revealing), but there are fears that can creep in as our children step out the door.
Did I do enough?
Will she stay near to Christ?
Will she be alright?
And will she be happy?
There is a desperateness in a momma’s heart when a band-aid, a hug, or some chocolate can’t fix our children’s woes. We want to protect them. We want to see them happy and fulfilled. But we cannot fix everything like we used to be able to.
We cannot be their Savior, but we can point them to the Savior.
Still, change is hard. Especially when you’re a momma. Moms have to learn a new rhythm just like their kids do.
Finding a New Rhythm—Learn to be ok with not so many people needing you.
Moms can get caught up in our identity of being a momma. We are used to being needed. But there is great joy to be found in seeing our children grow into mature, independent humans. And the irony is I still speak to most o my adult children every day. Their need of us changes—it does not go away. Learning to find a new rhythm in how we relate to our children is like learning a new dance. We adjust to the new person they are becoming and lay down expectations of the old.
Finding a New Rhythm—Rediscovering Our Passion and Purpose.
Our children leaving the nest is not all about them. Those left behind have to establish a new rhythm and explore their purpose, too. Sometimes moms can get lost in all they do for others and forget to pause long enough to see what else might be stirring in their heart. Reigniting the relationship with our spouse is one o the most significant things we can do. Praying about God’s leading in our lives in our local church or ministry might lead to a whole new calling.
Finding a New Rhythm—And Being Ok With It
That day on my daughter’s birthday, we did the big ugly cry. We did not know how to communicate what we were feeling. But we realized that was ok. Growing up is hard. Transitions are hard. And people changing is hard. Sometimes moms and daughters can be different from one another and learning to adapt to that change can be hard . . . but beautiful. Being ok with change is a part of life that helps us to navigate challenges more easily. Finding a new rhythm is a part of being alive. Each new day, every new season—is marked with new rhythms of their own. Will we adjust and dance? I hope so.
Finding a New Rhythm—in God’s Word
Every season has new rhythms of its own. And God’s grace is in each season. “For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven” (Ecclesiastes 3:1).
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