on hospital tours and breathing lessons

We're at a point in parenthood where I'm feeling like somehow we've gone back in time and we're going on a tour of the hospital.  We've got something new and big ahead and I've got so many ideas and thoughts...concerns and prayers. 

Our oldest enters first grade next year and although you'd think I felt this way when he entered kindergarten, I didn't.  We were able to have him attend kindergarten at the same school where he attended preschool since he was three, so our transition this year was seamless.  He knew he had a new hallway, a different length for the school day and a new door to enter, but for the most part nothing for me or him to really wonder about.

Next year however, we appear to be exploring all options and in my typical "overthink it" mode about most all things, I'm feeling like here we are again- do they have breathing classes for this?!

The funny thing is, I've been more quiet about this transition- maybe like some mom's are before they have a baby.  You've been told it'll be easy fine and so you may be freaking out inside, but you're told you need to be strong. 

I'm not sure we're ever all that strong as parents- and as they get bigger I see the things we're facing to be so heavy on the heart, in a far different way than exhaustion and wondering if your baby is getting enough milk or sleep or time being read to.  It felt super easy knowing my baby just needed love and care and time being held. 

I look ahead wondering what will truly fill their days, what influences will they be surrounded by, and what role can or do we have in what that looks like? 

Maybe you're of the camp that it all flushes out and it's not a big deal and what will be will be. I get that, and I know that my kids are not my own, but believe they are God's and in my care for a time. I know they can and will disobey, disrespect, and potentially (or quite possibly) turn their backs on me.  I also believe that for now while they are still young, as a parent I get to be the biggest advocate for them and that IS a big deal.  It's an honor to advocate for them, to look into options, and to really pray about what's best for what lies ahead.

I've been praying about this daily and know for right now we don't know what next year brings.  I know there are many mamma's having the same thoughts I am, and love the wisdom of those who have gone before.  I'm thankful for resources and good schools and the fact that these concerns are something I even get to explore- many don't have a different choice to consider.

When Evan was born he came so quickly I remember telling Benjamin- "I didn't look into natural birth!  I don't even know how to breathe!" In the end it didn't matter.  When I told him I couldn't go on, I still did.  Evan wasn't staying in there.  And so here we are- taking those next steps and breathing deep breaths, exploring what's ahead expectantly, and knowing we can't hit pause on this sweet season.  I wouldn't want to really, and I look forward to what's ahead with great thankfulness knowing the most important factor here- WHO has gone before us.  Resting in that peace today, as I try to breathe.

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