What a week of firsts for our family! I am now the proud mom of two Freshman...Hannah is a Freshman in high school and Rachel is a Freshman in College! Be still my heart.
We always have a tradition of taking the first day of school pictures outside our front door. For the past nine years (in our current home) it has been both of my girls in their back to school pictures. This year it's a little bit different.
Here is my Hannah on her very first day of high school. She has reached the six foot mark, loves to wear converse tennis shoes, retro 80's shirts, hamburgers are still her favorite, plays the flute in the high school band, is excited about basketball season, and has just discovered why her sister enjoys wearing Tom's shoes (she rocked a pair of olive colored Tom's today). My sweet Hannah, please don't be in such a hurry to grow up...all too soon. We are so proud of you and I take great joy in being your momma!
Hannah's new backpack is pictured on the right and the photos on the bottom right are new for my classroom this year. I think standouts are my new fave. They don't require frames, they are light weight, and they make me smile every time that I look at my beautiful daughters!
We all woke up early to get the suburban and truck packed with all of Rachel's things. It was still dark when we left the house for our road trip to college.
We made our way up the stairs as my mind flashed back to walking similair stairs on my very first move in day at Baylor. We opened the door to her room to see Rachel's roommate, Brittany and her family already inside. We love them already! Hannah says that her sister and Brittany, "are two peas in a pod" and I think she is right.
We spent the next hour arranging Rachel's things and getting her room fixed up. We enjoyed a quick bite of lunch at Chick Filet, a quick trip to Walmart, because I wanted my daughter to have a rug for her room and a little valence for the window to make the room a little more like home. We got back in time to set those up before we headed to Parent Orientation.
At Parent Orientation, we learned all kinds of helpful things like giving our daughter the space that she needs to make a niche at the university and we heard encouraging words like, "let them have the freedom to text you and come home when they choose." They encouraged that taking these steps would make it easier for our students to find their way and feel plugged in while they were at school. They gave us an overview about what would happen at welcome week and that if we didn't hear from our child this first week, not to get our feelings hurt because they were going to keep them very busy.
When we arrived back at Rachel's dorm we found this:
Then it was time to say goodbye...the second most difficult time of my life! The first being watching them wheel Rachel around the corner for brain surgery. I knew then and I know now that I can trust God to take excellent care of our daughter, He somehow loves her even more than I do. But, I still wasn't ready to say goodbye.
God had helped me be brave all day long, I didn't cry at all...until Rachel cried when we said goodbye. I somehow managed to choke back the tears knowing they would be waiting for me when we got back in the car. I whispered in her ear once more that I loved her, I was so proud of her, and that it was time to soar! I didn't say goodbye, like we had agreed, I just said, "I'll see you soon, sweetheart!"
And then we watched her walk a few steps to her "family group" for the week. A few minutes later we were back at the car...and we all three cried most of the drive home. With every fiber of my being I wanted my man to turn the car around and go get our daughter...but I know this is God's plan for her precious life...this is right....I'm just ready for it to feel right. But in the mean time, I continue to trust and pray and find great joy in knowing how dearly loved she is by her family and her Heavenly Father.
I didn't hear from her yesterday, but I did get a text from her and a picture at midnight (I'm keeping my phone by my bed just in case). Her happy text said, "I love ya'll. I tell you all about my day hopefully tomorrow. Today has been so fun and crazy! I love you lots!"
And this momma slept just a little bit better after that. Oh, God is good, He is trustworthy, His plans are perfect, His love is fierce, He is a mighty tower and stronghold (our Masada), our strength during the difficult changes of this life, our joy, our future, and our hope. He is all sufficient....we are in good hands!