Five and a half years ago, I walked around for nine months housing a little human being inside of me. I felt every hiccup, every shift in position. I went to the doctor's office and heard her heartbeat and saw her funny little movements on an ultrasound screen. One cold winter day, she was born, and I saw for the first time the little being I had sheltered for all those months. She was beautiful.
A few months later, I took her to the nursery at church. I didn't hear a single word sung or preached that day. All I could think about was my baby, who was out of my sight and hearing, who might need me, who might be afraid, who might be misunderstood by those who didn't know her the way I did.
As the years went on, I let go in other small ways, trusting a few people to care for her, but never straying too far. She is mine. I love her.
Today I took her to kindergarten. She was excited and could hardly wait to get there. She was greeted by a beautiful young teacher, an exciting classroom, and pink playdough. She will be fine. She is ready.
For me, this is the end of an era that I have adored. I can't help but feel that from now on someone else will be getting more of her than I am. That's a tough idea to swallow. But, I will be fine. I am ready.
This is life. And, it's wonderful to see her run out into the world and embrace it. She and I will always be mother and baby, no matter how old she gets or how many wonderful or terrible things she experiences in this life. We can handle it all, with God's help. We'll be fine. We are ready.