childhood memories

God's Greatest Gift

Late August is always a bittersweet time for me.  How is it possible I can be so proud and excited to see my children return to school and yet so inexplicably sad that they’re gone?

The house is quiet. It’s just my husband and me at the dinner table. Even the dog mopes. We miss them.

We’ve spent their whole childhoods worrying, wondering if we’re good parents, if we’re setting a good example and making the right decisions for their future. Now they’re embarking on the path we’ve set for them, and all I can think of is how much I miss the bygone days of their youth.

Those evenings when I would read aloud to them, the three of us snuggled close on the double chaise on the back deck until the crickets sang and darkness settled in. Only then would they agree it was late enough to go to bed.

The nights when they would ask me to cuddle with them in their beds and sing their baby songs until they fell asleep. Some nights I was so tired it was hard to say yes. But I did anyway, knowing that the day would come when they would no longer ask.

The backyard birthday parties, dance recitals, Little League, soccer and hockey games. The tennis matches, tubing, skiing, wakeboarding and swimming. Always so busy.

Now I look out at the lake. The boat sits empty in the lift. The water is smooth and calm. A few ducks float by. A blue heron feeds in the shallows nearby.

Next to my parents and my husband, no one has touched my life like my children and I thank God, every day, for blessing me so richly. My heart aches with the love I feel for them. I am so grateful for all the wonderful memories, the beautiful pictures nestled in my mind, and the warmth of their love that lingers in my heart.

I could not be more proud of the young adults they've become and I could not love them more. They are truly God's greatest gift.

Have you touched anyone lately?