Yesterday was Sunday.
Yesterday was the day I begged for the hands of time to stand still.
Yesterday was the day I ate a piece of pecan pie.
To be honest, I don’t particularly like pecan pie. In fact, under normal circumstances, if pecan pie was my only option for dessert, I would pass. But I didn’t pass on pie yesterday.
Our lunch outing was coming to a close. The plan was to finish lunch, then to get in the car and drive the 6 1/2 hours back to our home. My heart was aching. My eyes were burning as tears were fighting their way to the surface and beginning to pool around my lashes.
“Pie!” I could stall with pecan pie!
It had been 19 years of breakfasts, lunches and dinners…and teddy bears and leotards and sleepovers and giggles and sloppy kisses and “sort of funny” jokes and made up dances and dirty faces and messy rooms and pony tails and bathtub bubbles and hair bows and finger nail polish and boy troubles and texted check-ins and bonfires and all of a sudden it was Sunday.
As soon as the piece of pecan pie was gone, we would be leaving our middle daughter at college. I have never eaten so slowly in my life. As I gently skimmed the surface of the pie and trimmed off the tiniest morsel of pecan possible, my mind was racing. Would she be safe? Would she be happy? Would she find friends? Would she know not to wash her black volleyball socks with her white cardigan?
Then, I glanced into the face of my husband. There he sat, strong and brave. His lunch plate was empty, his glass of water, gone. His lunch was over. He was ready. How could that be? How could he be so certain that SHE was ready?
He didn’t shed a tear. He hugged her tightly, smiled and told her he was proud of her. He didn’t linger to watch her walk away. He was ready.
I, on the other hand, swallowed hard in a poor attempt to hide my emotions. As we drove away, I could hold it in no longer. Tears streaming, heart breaking, I surrendered to the ache and allowed myself to quietly weep. Gently, my husband reached his hand to mine and held on tightly.
After months of the whirlwind of college visits, recruiting trips, transcripts, scholarship application deadlines, pros and cons lists, praying, planning, preparing, equipping, shopping, packing and unloading, in my quiet weeping, Christ reminded me that SHE BELONGS TO HIM. From the moment she was born, SHE HAS BELONGED TO HIM. He reminded me that he loves her so much more than I am even capable of loving. In this transition, she will learn to depend on him more than ever.
He promised me this:
When she is lonely, and she will be – He will give her comfort.
When she is sad, and she will be – He will give her peace.
When she is hurt, and she will be – He will provide healing.
When she is sick, and she will be – He will be her great physician.
The quiet moments in our home – when she would normally be telling us about her day or dancing around in her awkward but beautifully-fantastic style, I have to remind myself of these promises. Whatever her future holds, I know that Christ is in control.
As for Mr. Toughguy…on the drive home, he lingered in a gas station convenient store waiting for her to emerge from the bathroom – like he had done a million times before – standing vigil to ensure her safety. It took him a minute to realize that she wasn’t coming out. Our new normal is a little strange, a little uncomfortable, a little painful, but exactly what it needs to be. Our middle girl is growing into an amazing young woman for Christ and we wouldn’t want it any other way.
The more I think about it – Pecan pie isn’t really all that bad. It’s not my favorite, but I think if I really try to embrace the idea of a pie made from nuts and sugar, I might actually be able to appreciate it.
XOXO, The Christian Prepster’s Mom