Change is all around me. I can't stop it. I can't control it. Perhaps change, next to God of course, is the only constant of life. Change invites us to grieve for what is lost and hope for what could be. And change is good. But change can just plain suck too.
Our friends are moving away. And tomorrow Todd is helping them stain their deck and we'll have dinner and talk and laugh and watch our boys play together, and it's probably one of the last times life will look like that with them before they're gone.
And for some reason I've tried to hold inside what I'm feeling about their leaving and I don't know why, because their absence needs a magnitude of tears. Life for sure is changing big time for them. And their moving away has a ripple effect on those of us left behind - missing them, happy for them, wishing things could stay the same, and rejoicing that things never do stay the same. Because how boring and stale it would be if life never changed and it was always so predictable and monotonous.
And being the mother to a rapidly growing toddler keeps change fresh on the horizon on a daily basis. I cannot get over how quickly Tommy learns things and how we have to keep changing things because he just keeps growing up.
Tonight is Tommy's first night in his "big-boy" bed. As I tucked my little two year old boy in this big twin bed that he will call his for probably a very, very long time, I couldn't help but think of how big and grown up he seems to get with every week. And I don't want to keep him small, and I am loving all of the various stages we find ourselves in life with him as he continues to grow. Yet, taking down the crib tonight and watching his room transform from a nursery into this room for a boy and not a baby, just reminded me of how little control I have over life and how it changes. How we change. How our surroundings change. How it's supposed to just keep changing.
And wasn't it just a few months ago I was preparing for his arrival and arranging tiny diapers and blankets and carefully folding onesies, holding my pregnant belly and wondering what life was going to look like with my little boy?
The deconstructed crib hurt me inside a whole lot more than I thought it would. Because there is that nagging longing for another baby. Will there be another? Could there be another? Can we really do this all over again? Do we want to? And WHEN if at all? And I know all of the answers to most of those questions, yet how life continues to change around me fills me with uncertainty as I think about the future and adding one more little mini-Todd/Jenn creation to our lives and home and family. And trusting God with the ifs and whens of that still feels scary. It takes guts to believe that we'll be okay and what He has for us is best whether we have another child or not.
I guess all that's left to do as I sit here holding where change is impacting and penetrating my life is to just feel it. Not ignore it or stuff it down like I have done the majority of my life. Just cry the sad tears, cry the happy ones, laugh the laughs I can still laugh with my friends, and enjoy every precious second that Tommy's life is whether we have another child or not. And remain alive and hopeful and present and feeling, because this is real life. We are called to live in the tension and the goodbyes and the growing up.
And I don't want to allow change to suck the ability to live out of me. I want to stay in this. Every real, painful, joyous, wonderful, wretched, awful, amazing, and unforgettable moment.