Thursday, April 14, 2016

A Place to Belong

I visited the Farmer's Market in Old Town this morning. 
My senses breathed in the fresh colors of Spring,  and I couldn't help but feel the newness around me, an awakening, a promise in the air. 

My hometown was coming to life and the sound of it filled my ears with a tune born of sameness and comfort. 

Ever the same, ever changing. 
Seasons and Years come and they go...and as much as this place I love is as familiar as the well-worn Nikes on my feet, it's also growing and blooming and reinventing itself. 
Always full of things to discover. 
Even if its as simple as finding the beauty in the purple redbud tree against the red of a vintage train caboose. 

Spring, as always, never fails to delight my eyes.

I made my few purchases of baby leaf lettuce, some wildflower honey and a loaf of fresh cheddar bread and found my way over to the gazebo to sit and finish my coffee and enjoy the sights and sounds of a new day. 

The tidal wave of nostalgia washed over me unexpectedly, forcefully, and I didn't quite know what to do with it. 
Silly me, I should have seen it coming. My heart was already full to bursting this morning. 
God knows that these past weeks have been full of head-on collision, knock me off my feet moments. Every time I turn around there's another 'last' to contend with, another reminder that this 18 year chapter in our family book is about to close.

We've come to another pivot point in our lives. 
One that reorders the days and hours of our routine (such as it is...). 
One that provides fresh challenge and purpose for my husband.

One that will carry our girl 11 hours away. 

Away to a new state, a new city, a new place to call home for the next 4 years... 
And sitting there with my thoughts and my warm cup of comfort, I couldn't help but wonder if it will give her the same sense of place, of belonging, of home that she's known her whole life thus far. 

I can't relate to a change like that. 
In a world where people change places all the time, I've never lived further than 15 miles from this place I was born and raised. The concept is foreign to me, the idea of leaving a place that's as much a part of me as the breath in my lungs. 
And truthfully, I pray that I never have to learn it. 

In talking with my sweet girl, who admittedly is sometimes unrecognizable in her overnight maturity, I know that she feels it. Feels the strain of her roots pulling on her heart as she knows she has to leave this place to pursue her passion, her dream. 

She said to me "Mom, if I could take everything about where I'm going and move it all here, I'd have everything I want. But I can't do that and I know I have to go."
I blinked and she grew up. Just like that. 
No way I was that mature at 18. 

But she is a different girl and she knows who she is and what she wants and accepts what she has to do to attain it. With a grace and a resignation that's far beyond my understanding. 

And the difference between us at 18, is that she has placed her trust and hope and future into the hands that made her. 
I could regret that I didn't do the same at her age, but I'll choose to be grateful instead. 
Grateful to our God, who in his abundant grace, taught me what I needed to learn in order to guide her. To direct her towards Him.

Our world will shift and change all the time. 
Sometimes it keeps you in a 15 mile radius. 
Sometimes it sends you 623 miles away. 

But when God is our life, He is our home.
Our place to belong.

"Therefore, as you received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in him, rooted and built up in him and established in the faith, just as you were taught, abounding in thanksgiving." - Colossians 2:6-7