I watched her walk into the airport until I couldn’t see her anymore. I touched my husband’s arm and said that we could go now. I’m glad he was driving as of course there were tears in my eyes. My daughter was spreading her wings and off to a new adventure.
Now, she has been living on her own in a huge city for about four years, and had gone away to university prior to that. Our nest, technically, had been empty for a while. Then, after almost a year working from home in a tiny bachelor apartment, she told us she was moving out of the apartment and traveling for a few months until she was called back to work in the office. The perfect time to decide what city she actually wanted to put her roots down in.
This girl was bitten by the travel bug at a wee age, asking her dad and I to take her to see the ocean at three years old. What did we do? We packed up and drove to New Jersey to show her the ocean and we had a wonderful time. I knew that she want to explore the world. The COVID-related shut down gave her time to plan, and drove prices way down for transportation and accommodation and she is actually saving money doing this and giving up her expensive downtown apartment. She is happy to self-quarantine in new surroundings after staring at the same walls for the last 365 days.
We moved her out and brought her belongings back to our house. We had her home for a whole week and it was busy, but such a treasure to my husband and I. She and I spent time playing a Nancy Drew game on the laptop with her head on my shoulder, just like we have done since she was very young. We cooked together, drank copious cups of tea and talked about big and little things. She sorted and packed and resorted and repacked until her carryon bag and backpack were filled to absolute capacity with all she would take with her.
Snowflakes swirled as we set off for the airport. We chatted and laughed and made the most of the last hour to be physically next to each other for a while. I am absolutely excited for her and think she is so brave and confident to pursue her dream so responsibly at her age. But I am still mom and will miss her.
All the thought and effort and planning that went into launching this trip got me thinking that if I want the dreams I have to come to pass that I need to be more intentional, more diligent and more sacrificing of my time to make them happen. The dream God has planted in me concerns encouraging women, especially those over 40, through the written and spoken word to thrive in this life. I need to plan meals ahead, shut of the TV, use social media and not let it be a time waster and carve out time for study, prayer, writing and preparing for speaking engagements.
My thoughts and words need to be sorted and packed and then resorted and repacked until they will answer the questions and meet the felt needs of the women I interact with. God does not usually just download a message into my heart in its finished state – I have my part to play. Any goal worth achieving takes time, effort, sacrifice and so many small decisions and choices.
As the airport doors shut behind my daughter, she walked into a new adventure and closer to her dreams. Now I sit in my office inspired, with plans to prepare for adventures of my own.