Monday, May 13, 2013

What Part of Life's Journey Are You On?

Being on the Other Side of the Journey

Those who sow in tears will reap a harvest of joy.    Psalm 126:5

I woke up feeling low. No particular reason I could identify. As Chris and I headed out on our walk, I pushed back my sadness and embraced the crisp beautiful day.

There had been a mighty wind blowing the night before, so our walk was littered with fallen branches, large and small.

Toward the end of our walk, we came across an adorable petite thirty-something who was hauling a very large heavy limb off the sidewalk.

Chris commented, “That’s quite a twig.” 

She smiled, “I know…it’s a little heavy. I’m just gonna trying to drag it out of the way.” (Chris would’ve been the first to help her, but she was almost done.)

As we continued to walk, I burst into tears. They streamed down my face. Chris didn’t skip a beat, he continued talking, looking straight ahead, and didn’t notice.

“Hon, do you realize I’m crying here?”

I didn’t blame him…there wasn’t really any warning. I had gone from smiling to weeping almost instantly.

It struck me hard, 25 years of full-time mothering is coming to a close. It’s a time of transition. And that brings with it both promise and uncertainty.

That young mom was a living, breathing reminder that I am on the other side of so much.

For as long as I can remember, what I wanted most in life was to get married and have kids. And I did that. I lived in the burbs, had lots of mother-friends, baked (did lots of that), cooked (did some of that), and quilted (never got to that).

And now, this part of my life draws to a close.

Of course, I’ll go on with a full life. I’ve got plenty of other things to do—I’ll still be the editor of and Healthcare Marketer’s Exchange.I’ll still have numerous freelance writing and editing jobs. I’ll continue expanding my writing coaching and workshops. I am thankful that I really enjoy my work. And I’ll still have my wonderful husband, family, friends, and my children…just not full time.

Today when I glance out of my home office into the living room, there is young life out there…

My vibrant busy funny and lively daughter perches at her desk. She too is on the other side of something, leaving her childhood and the only home she has ever known. She will be off to college in a few months. Before her lies the promise and hope of all that is to come. Soon she will occupy a new space.

And the space she leaves behind will be oh so empty.

What’s Your Story?
Where are you on the journey of life? Are you transitioning from one thing to another?       

Note: Click Here for a sampling of a Sara Groves CD that influenced the title of this post. 


  1. Elise: great story. I am a 60 year old pastor trying to come to grips with my age and not wishing for the past. As in..."I wish I was younger knowing what I know now." I know God is not finished using me yet, but the transition from a vibrant, young pastor to one who is definitely on the other side has been a challenge. Not a bad challenge. Not one I regret because I have had more fun in ministry the past 8 years at this church than I have EVER. Both our girls are grown and gone. The challenges we face are so different-the reality of retirement, lack of money, etc-and yet I know God is good and will provide. Sorry for rambling here.

  2. Thanks for your comments, Bill. is full of transitions. We're not too far from where you are. I have many wonderful things ahead. Yet I realize so much of life is behind me now. My girls are mostly grown and gone too. In fact, this past Mother's Day was the first time I recall only having one out of four home. Yes, I had a pity party. I'm happy to hear you're having more fun in ministry than ever. And pray you will experience God's goodness through the challenges. We know God is faithful!! Don't know if you've stopped by our Contributor site, but I'd love you to. Come on Blessings!


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