Being the oldest sibling, I was the first child to ‘move out’ of my parents house. I can still remember how hard it was to tell my parents I was moving a little over an hour away. At that time the distance seemed so great. Of course, we soon realized that the distance was extremely short and we would see each other often. My sister now lives over 8 hours away and my brother is off at college out of state. I think I just always believed my family would always be in Nashville.
June 30 of this year was the day my father was laid off. I can still remember him sharing the news with joy rather than bitterness. He truly believed that God was in control and that he was being given a gift…time with mom. He firmly believed that God would provide for his family and that God would open the doors to a new job in His time. My dad remained faithful to that…and I learned much from his quietness these last few months. He searched this area for a new position but to no avail. He either didn’t have all the credentials or he was over qualified. He began looking elsewhere…even out of state! As December drew to a close he was offered a job…almost 4 hours away. It was the best Christmas gift ever, he would have a steady job with a good company.
I have to tell you it is completely bitter sweet. The moments of happiness alternate with sadness so quickly it can make my stomach turn. We are all entering into a new phase of our relationships. I am entering in a new phase as a daughter and mother. Sometimes it is hard because I want to cry and laugh and I just can’t get them out at the same time. And I feel totally selfish…and childish even. There was a comfort knowing that my parents were so close.
And then, I realize I am just fooling myself. It is not about distance. My in laws (whom I love dearly and count as important to me as any other family) live 10 minutes from me. It is not about relationships, my boys know and love my sister and they only see her a couple times a year. It is not about babysitters or last minute help.
It is simply that I will miss them. Bottom line, I just never saw them moving away. As Heath and I built our family here I just always believed they would be here for the long haul. And now, here I am as a child letting go of my parents in a new way. A way that is stretching me and causing me to go through a myriad of emotions. A way that is having me rethink how I will walk through 2009.