Y’all. I am having a moment. And I feel it’s worthy of both drawl and dramatics.
Because my world as I have known it is changing. My whole mothering gig is leveling up. And I’m pretty sure it’s going to get exponentially harder from here on out. Like maybe I’ve made it to the level with King Koopa on Mario. Only not. Because I’m pretty sure this will be way harder. And also the prize at the end has got to be a whole lot better.
This fall my oldest will get her driver’s permit and my youngest starts middle school. And so I sit here feeling all kerflummoxed. How did this even happen? Two seconds ago I was changing diapers and cutting PB&J’s into bite sized squares and managing temper tantrums and 7:30 p.m. bedtime routines. Or at least that’s how it feels. Also, it feels like I might be getting old.
When you charge into battle (not that parenting is a battlefield…mostly, until it is…I just needed a good illustration) and suddenly the enemy shifts and an infantry unexpectedly appears on the left flank armed to the hilt (or it could be a tween giving you the death stare), your general might make a strategic move to fall back and regroup (or mom might need to hide in the bathroom with some chocolate while she figures out what to do).
Ahhh…there it is. Regroup. It’s our theme here at Middle Places during the month of August. And if it’s anything like July, well…tie your shoes tight, girlfriend. Secure your loose items and hang on tight for the ride, because the Middle Sisters are ready to bring it.
Whether we have gotten too relaxed in our formations, spread ourselves too thin, or perhaps even lost sight of our Leader, there are definitely times in our lives when we need to regroup.
As I explore these new levels of the parenting gig, batten down the hatches on another school year and kick off a new business venture with my husband, it feels like the perfect time to regroup. Because the way I was keeping all of my plates spinning is not going to work in this next phase of life. Plain and simple. It will be a constant struggle of “Pivot. Pivot. PIVOT!” (Can’t you just hear Ross and Chandler?!) if I don’t do a little bit of planning now. I don’t want someone to be yelling “Shut up. Shut up. SHUT UP!” at me because I have lost my everloving mind.
I’m not going to sit here and lie and tell you that I’m dreading it, though…this next level of parenting. Because I’m not. I love the independence that my children have developed. I’m enjoying watching them unfold into real people, capable of speaking up for themselves and pursuing their passions. They can even order their own food at a restaurant now and no longer follow me into the bathroom.
I know there will be a lot of heartache involved in that process for them and for me. I’m no fool. But I’m still excited to see what happens in this next phase of life for them. And maybe just a little bit for myself as well, because suddenly I have a little more time on my hands, even if I do spend it waiting for soccer practice to be over.
And you can pat my shoulder and say “Oooh honey. If you only knew what was coming next…” And I will grin. Because I’ve done just that (more often mentally than in actual real life) to many mommas of littles these last couple of years especially. I know.
The truth of the matter is that there is really no way to prepare. Each day we will do the things we need to do. And sometimes that will be easy. Most of the time it will be hard. Sometimes it will look beautiful. But most of the time it will be a mess.
So, today I regroup. I pull my family in tight for just a moment. We make a new plan. We follow our Leader. We call on our friends to fortify our ranks. And we trust that God can see the big picture. He knows the ending and all the skirmishes, victories and losses, one step forward and two steps back dances, and marches that will get us to the next level.
“Ooooh honey” me all you want. Today I grin. Because God’s got this.
Is there an area of your life that is requiring you to regroup right now? We’d love to hear about it! And be sure to come back often during August as we explore and unpack this theme.