Give me my scallop-shell of quiet,
My staff of faith to walk upon,
My script of joy, immortal diet,
y bottle of salvation.
My gown of glory, hopes true gauge,
And thus I'll take my pilgrimage.

~Sir Walter Raleigh

A hiker, walking for pleasure, likes to choose between several alluring trails.
The pilgrim desires only the road that leads home.

~Frank W. Boreham

Friday, July 30, 2010

Bittersweet Isn't Only Chocolate

"Of all horrid things,
leave taking is the worst."
~Mr. Woodhouse

Of all literary characters, Mr. Woodhouse is undoubtedly among the whiniest. Yet in this instance, he states the truth from my perspective as well as his own.

It seems like yesterday when my youngest chick left home. For those last few years just prior, she had been an 'only child'. She was a young woman then and my companion, confidant and encourager, she was my comfort and my joy.

She left in the arms of the best of men, to establish their home together. The courtship was sweet, the marriage a thing of beauty, the home established, God centered and so it remains to this day. Their lives have continue to only bless.

But the leaving!

How well I remember the desolation felt, the immensity of the hole in the heart, the certainty that my life was over and would serve no purpose from that time forward.

And she was going and they were settling only a few miles out of town.

All these thoughts were quite irrational of course, but such are the emotions of a mother's heart. All I had ever wanted was to be a mother and mothering was my joy from the beginning.

Now This Day, another daughter of mine is in a similar place. She too has only wifed and mothered. That was all she desired. It has been her joy. Her youngest has also been 'an only child' for some time, has been a friend, a rock, a joy and delight to her mum.

But this last chick has met the man of her dreams, the very best of young men. Their courtship has been a wonder, their wedding a thing of beauty. And off they go to lands further than the edge of town, to begin their life together.

It is hard especially knowing that the hole in the heart and the bittersweet pain that will echo through it, my daughter now faces. Hers is a greater desolation than my own.

But off they will go, these darlings of ours, and not without their own heart pain at the leaving.

Our Lord goes before to 'seek out a place for them to pitch their tent'.
That has always been His way.
Our prayers will follow them all their days which is our way.

May they go out with joy,
and be led forth with Peace,

may the mountains break forth before them with singing,
and all the trees of the field clap their hands.

For the ones remaining behind the Lord "will restore the years...."

He has.

He will.

He promised.