I hate the term “empty nest”. Yesterday we took our daughter, Marissa, to Anderson University for her first year of college. Of course I’ve run through the whole gamut of emotions as I’m sure I will continue to do over the next few weeks, months or maybe years but over-all I’m good. After seeing her face the first time I visited the campus with her and the peace that came over me for her while there I could’t help but be ok with it. I’m secure in the knowledge that that is where God has led her to be.
But “empty nest” implies a loss. While I am currently experiencing an absence of her in our home at the same time I am experiencing a fullness of her in my heart. I’ve heard many people describe this moment as if a piece of you has been removed or of having this hole in your heart. I don’t see it that way though. My daughter was and still is instrumental in the expansion and growth of my heart. If it weren’t for her and my wife and the unconditional love they poured into my life I may never have discovered and better understood the love that Jesus has for us all. I look at it more as my heart is being stretched to a larger capacity (over 86.41 miles to be exact). My love for Marissa is growing stronger and becoming more evident in her (temporary) absence.
I am so proud of her for the faith, strength, courage, discernment and wisdom she has displayed over the past few years. She has become such an amazing young lady. I feel that we have prepared her the best we could but more importantly, I know God has prepared her. So, I may be a little sad but I have no fear for her.
I can’t wait to see what’s next… (I love you Boo)