A new year. How can it be that it is 2014 already? I remember 1996, or I should say that I remember one thing very clearly about 1996. I became a mother. I am one of those people who when I think of the 90's, I think it was only ten years ago. Perhaps that is part of the problem. It wasn't just ten years ago.
My oldest daughter is seventeen. She will graduate from high school this year. In preparing for this event, I started cutting t-shirts into squares in an effort to make a t-shirt blanket for her. Yes I own a sewing machine, no I do not use it much. When my girls were little I thought I should learn to sew. A very kind lady from our church then helped me to make beautiful dresses and things for my girls. This lasted...well a short time. Raising two girls nineteen months apart became very busy and my sewing machine got put away for several years. It made a brief appearance to make a Halloween costume for my son several years ago as the thing he wanted to be was not sold in stores. Again with that costume I had help.
This week my sewing machine was brought out from under my bed and placed on a table in the family room to start the process of making a t-shirt blanket that I am not at all prepared to make both talent wise and emotionally. As I sit here this morning at my desk I realize I am dragging my feet. It it one step in the process of letting go and she woke up this morning not feeling well. How can she possibly be this old? In my mind's eye I can see her in her pig tails and footy pajamas carrying her teddy bear.
But then how fair is that? I myself was once a little girl in pig tails and footy pajamas carrying a teddy bear. Yet here I am a grown woman married with children and although I wish I could keep her with me forever, I know it isn't to be. It is not for me to clip her wings but to encourage her to spread them out and fly. To soar amongst this life and seek and find all that God has planned for her. For me to attempt to keep her is going against what my calling is as her mother.
Next year she will be in college and while she won't be far away she has spent her winter break telling everyone that this is our last Christmas together as next year she will be gone at college. I think it is her way of preparing herself for what is coming. Although I did have to burst her bubble and tell her the dorms close for break and she will be home for about a month for winter break in college.
I'm not prepared and yet I know that within the next few minutes I will be in there sewing the t-shirts together. I will look at the representation of her school career with fond memories and a curiosity of the ones she will create in college.
Life is a journey. Parenthood is a journey. We aren't necessarily prepared for any of it but it is comforting that we don't have to go through any of it alone.
So I have some sewing to do today. I don't remember how to get thread on that bobbin thing that goes inside the machine, I apparently should have gotten some sort of stabilizer so the t-shirts don't stretch when I sew them, and I am not exactly sure that this is going to go well. But I'm going for it. I'm going to start sewing my straight lines just as I am trying to walk a straight and narrow path. After all...how hard can it be?