Another Chapter Begins…

I caught a glimpse of you this morning.

You were standing outside, waiting for the bus a few minutes early. Just like me, you woke up early with anticipation for today and had time to spare. It’s what we do.

You had a bag with your sweater – in case you get chilly – and a book – in case there’s time to read. Always prepared. 😉

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You stood out there, just staring. What you were feeling, I’m not quite sure. Probably a lot of things. Also just like me, you tend to overthink things.

I thought about all the other times I’ve watched you stand right in that very spot, ready and waiting. Always ready.

So I sneakily snapped this photo from behind the glass storm door. It’s what I do;)

Your first ballet recital at 3 years old.

You first day of every school year.

First Communion.

And today, as you await your Fifth Grade Farewell Ceremony.

Yes, my sweet girl. After today, you will be a middle schooler.

A middle schooler.

Where oh WHERE do the years go?

No seriously – I’m asking.

As I watched you walk on stage to Pomp and Circumstance, every year of your life flashed before my eyes and I just don’t get it. We were JUST saying goodbye to preschool? These elementary school years have come and gone faster than I could have ever imagined. Ever. I know you’re ready. And excited. “They don’t even have lines in middle school, Mommy! We can just walk the halls all by ourselves!”

I also know a part of you is scared.

Because you’re just like me.

The unknown scares us a lot. But this year, you and I have had a lot of good talks. You’ve conquered so much. And through it all, we’ve talked about how the scariest stuff is sometimes the best stuff. You were scared to try out for drama, and ended up having the time of your life. You were nervous about auditioning for the concert solo, but you did it. You overcame. You’ve learned just how much to lean on God. When things feel overwhelming, to let go, and let Him. It’s our favorite saying, these days, huh? And you are becoming – before our very eyes – the most incredible young lady. When I say your dad and I couldn’t be prouder of you, we really couldn’t. It’s just not possible.

I know you’ll take with you all the amazing things you’ve learned in elementary school and those teachers couldn’t have prepared you better- socially and academically. But allow me to share some advice as well:

Keep on being brave and trying new things. Even when it’s hard. Just like your principal said in today’s speech, “even if you’re the only one.” You’ll find your people there and trust me when I say, when you find your people, it is one of life’s greatest blessings.

Keep that gigantic heart of yours. The world needs more kindness, now more than ever. It needs more people like you, so please don’t ever change. Kindness does not equal weakness, don’t ever let anyone tell you that. Middle school may test you, but stay strong, sweet girl. It’s one of your greatest attributes.

I know you’ll continue being overly prepared for what’s to come. It’s been your thing since you could talk and it brings you peace. I get it, because it does the same for me. But try and be flexible when what’s to come looks different than you had imagined. Again, sometimes the best stuff comes when you’re NOT expecting it. So invite it in. Accept that sometimes our plans are not God’s plans. Try to roll with that.

Talk things out when you need guidance. With me, with Dad, with your sister, brother, friends, teacher – anyone you feel comfortable with. Having someone to listen to you can do a world of wonders. A lot of times you even have the answers, it just takes hearing it out loud to realize it. And remember, a lot of those things you’re stressed about – you won’t even remember someday. Trust me on this.

Look ahead – not down – with those bright and shining eyes of yours, because there is so much beauty and goodness in the world if you are aware.

You are ready for what’s to come. You were born ready.

And all those tears you saw me cry today – don’t worry, they’re happy tears. Because I just can’t believe that I get to be your mom and watch you light up the world.

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The way you’ve already lit up mine.

 

Comments

  1. Ok wow!!! Tears are flowing!!! What a beautiful post about your daughter! I’m right where you are with my daughter. Your words are my words. Difference is I have a rising 9th grader!!! High school here we come! Who said motherhood would be so incredibly rewarding and yet so bittersweet! Time. Stand. Still. Just for a little while. 😊❤

  2. Cindy Johnson says:

    OMG!! You’ve got me balling😢Beautifully put Liz!!

  3. Mimi H. says:

    It’s a bittersweet time for sure. My oldest grandson began middle school last year. I was so worried and praying constantly. It turned out fine and we are so pleased with the school, his team of teachers. The ability to grow and branch out at this age is good. It’s a challenging age, for sure, but after you breathe and let go, it will be okay. 💪🏼

  4. Beautiful!

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