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Saturday, April 11, 2015

It still hurts (but in a good way)

This parenting thing often blows me out of the water.  Like, how in the world did I get here? What am I doing? When do I get to that feeling where I don't feel like I'm winging it anymore? and What in the world were we thinking? Parenting is crazy ridiculous hard. It's instinctual. It's amazing. It doesn't make sense, yet it makes all the sense in the world. It makes me smile, laugh and feel joy like I never though possible at times, and others times feel pain like I didn't know I could.

If you follow me on Instagram, you know we had our big girl with us for a whole 7 days. We soaked Sunny in every single moment she was here. She still lights up a room, loves hippos, dances like nobody is watching, sings in the shower, and teaches me a thing or two about loving life in the here and now. And then she left this morning.

Do not get me started on what letting her get out of the car and walk into the airport felt like, letting her go... again. Ya, it was like this all over again. Gut wrenching. I seriously don't know how one is suppose to love on someone else with everything they have, investing almost all their time and energy, investing the whole of their being morning, noon, night, and of course the middle of this night too cause that's what moms do.

teaching, training and guiding
hugging, kissing and holding her hand
picking up the pieces when necessary
bandaging up skinned knees and celebrating lost teeth
writing thank you letters and apology letters
reviewing for first grade spelling test and then high school final exams
holding your breath as they go off to school the first time or drive off in a car the first time
wiping shed tears and laughing and bad jokes
dancing like nobody is watching in the living room together with the music turned up too loud
changing flat tires on the side of the freeway and shopping for bras
giving countless lectures to an audience of one with rolling eyes, then being surprised that she heard me at all and took it all to heart
making cookies. And brownies. And smoothies. And candy. And more
reminding her to do her chores... again... for the 10th time, then later her remind her young brother to do his chores... again... for the 10th time

And you mamas know that this is just the tip of the iceberg. We invest all of our selves into our children year after year after year. How does anyone invest this type of time, energy and love every single day and night for 20 years into another person, and then one day it just literally walks out the door. And is never coming back to stay.

She is gone.

And I still miss her.

And it still hurts.

And almost 2 years later there's still a hole where she used to be in my everyday.

And that's okay, because that's how it's suppose to work. I know if it feels like this now, and I cannot wait for the next moment no matter how far in the future it will be that I can wrap my arms around her again and feel her warmth next to mine again... than I think we've done something right. I'm not going to take for granted that loving my daughter and loving being with my daughter is not a given. (So much for not getting me started with what all that letting go stuff feels like!)
I've had mamas tell me that this feeling never really goes away. That even with time, there is always going to be a hole in my heart where she used to be. I can live with that. That hole is a God-given blessing! And there's great consultation and joy knowing how amazingly wonderfully she's doing out of the nest.  She's so happy to be a wife to her Airman and rocking nursing school at the same time. We're out-of-this-world proud of her! She is still changing and growing even though she is away from us. She's becoming a better her. And ultimately that's everything we prayed for.

God willing if we are lucky we're going to do this 6 more times?
What in the world were we thinking?!

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