...yes, Brooke is Bama bound. Tomorrow. I am very excited for her of course, but also a little sad. For she is the last of our family's children to head for college and I will miss her.
Yeah, you would have thought that I should have been able to avoid these emotions. I'm single. I have no children of my own. So how the heck can I end up with a dang empty nest. When there was no nest. But there was. Just look at them: This photo from three years ago is one of my favorites. But I love any picture I ever made with any of them. They are like my own kids (and yes, my sisters, I know the uncle gets the fun part without the hard part). So much of my purpose has been about trying to be there for them and model a Christlike life for them. And I am so proud of all of them...I am starting to learn many lessons from them about living for Jesus in the 21st century.
This feeling is not new for me. A long time ago (not in a galaxy far, far away -- although it WAS about the time that phrase was coined), my oldest sister left for college, the first to leave the nest. I'm not sure I've ever told anyone this, but I cried in my room that night. I knew life would never be the same. Of course, it wasn't -- as it turns out, it got better. That night was the beginning of the formation of new, deeper friendships with my sisters as we became adults.
Time doesn't stand still, and each phase can be better than the one before. I know that now. I could not have imagined it then. And so, as I drive home from T-town tomorrow after helping her move in, I will rejoice. Because I know that my "kids" have now all begun their adult journeys. Three of them at UA, and one at Montevallo.
No, things are not the same as when they were all around all the time. But I know they will be better. I can't wait to see how Brooke matures in her independence, as her older cousins and brother are already doing. And I am so excited about the prospect of being their much older adult peer over next 20-30 years, and growing closer to them just as I did with their mothers.
Goodbye, Brooke. And hello!