Nashville has a special place in my heart. Maybe it was my childhood full of Dolly & Porter, Conway & Loretta, and Hee Haw, but when I see the Batman building up ahead, the playlist lands firmly on “country.” I may live in Texas, but if you want to know why there is a print of The Ryman Auditorium on my wall downstairs, I’ll tell you about the time I’m sure Patsy Cline whispered in my ear and told me to sing.
Now it’s summertime and I find myself back in Music City. One daughter is moving into a new apartment and the other is readying her family to leave for a new town altogether. What’s a mom to do? Roll up her sleeves and offer to help.
As moms we want to see our girls grow up and be good at these “adulting” tasks. We pray for them and ask the Lord to protect them and grow them and strengthen them. It is a bit of a surprise to come face to face with these grown women and see that these prayers are indeed being answered. Watching my oldest navigate the sale of one house, the buying of another, a lot of renovations in between, all the while homeschooling 2 and keeping tabs on the toddler and the baby have given me a greater appreciation for her. She and her husband are leaving behind family and a church family that has grown very dear to them. Have you ever watched someone else say their good-byes? Paul’s words in his letters will grip your heart like never before.
On the other end of the spectrum is my youngest daughter, moving into her first real apartment, on her own, buying her first car, on her own, and in general handling life pretty well. I thought I’d feel unneeded, but instead I love seeing her independent self at work. We spent time buying furniture, pillows, lamps, returning pillows, returning lamps, and purchasing wall art. I think I managed to impart a little bit of wisdom (“You don’t want to walk through your conversation area.”) and also learned how to keep quiet. (“No tassels ever. Got it. You don’t like decorating with words. Are you SURE you’re my daughter? Ok. No words.”) Seeing her delight at her own kitchen with her own bright red Kitchenaid mixer and her own food processor – ok, she’s my daughter.
When my middle daughter announced she was dropping in for a surprise visit, coming in from her corner of Tennessee, this mom’s joy was overflowing. Are moves hard? Of course! Are the emotions and tears and stress and anxiety simmering below the surface and waiting to bubble over? You bet! There is good news though. God’s people are everywhere and your heart will make room for them. Your family loves you and is that anchor, that reminder that you aren’t starting over with every single relationship. In the midst of a busy week, the sight of each daughter reminded me that God’s good plan, His covenant faithfulness, is to us and to our children and to their children.
Were my grandmother still alive, she would have turned 100 this week. In her married life she moved 39 times. I like to think of her in her heavenly home, her forever home, the kind not on wheels, rejoicing in the presence of her savior. It is well with her soul. Katie, and Kristin, and Kelsey – may it be well with yours too.
About the Author:
Renee is passionate about teaching. She loves nothing more than to gather around God’s word with the women of Christ Church in Katy, Texas. She also teaches high-school writing and literature at PREP classes, a homeschool tutorial, as well as mentoring Classical Christian teachers through the CiRCE Institute, and serving on the advisory board of Covenant College. She and her husband Steve have 5 children and 7 grandchildren and Renee’s suitcase is always ready for the next trip. Closer to home you can find her baking, weightlifting, or trying one of Houston’s new restaurants.