Sherry A. Phillips

Suspense Author

Can You Believe I’m Sad AND Happy Today?

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It’s true. And while it may seem odd that I can be both sad and happy, once I explain why, you’ll all understand.

My beautiful daughter is starting college today. It has been a long journey to get here, but we are here.

Eighteen years ago on June 11, I gave birth to my first child. I always tell people that as an only child, I always knew my parents loved me, but it was not until I had my daughter that I truly understood unconditional love and just how much my parents loved me.

It was and continues to be, a miraculous experience becoming a mother. There was a line from a television show I used to watch where a character described motherhood as taking out your heart and watching it walk around in front of you. I think that’s a pretty accurate description.

By God’s grace, my heart was multiplied three times.

We have had a long road getting here. There were the normal hills and valleys of life that we all endure, but there were other, scarier roads to travel for both of us.

Bullying in middle school, financial troubles, relocating away from friends and more serious concerns.

However, God is good, He saw us through it all and this morning she drove her brothers to school as she headed off to her first day of college.

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I am happy she is growing into the woman God intends for her to be. She wants to be an animator and work for one of the studios. As her mother, I want all of her dreams to come true.

Looking back, I remember her love of drawing, her love of science and her fascination with all things DOG! There was a time in her life that everything had to do with dogs. My husband and I were even referred to as “Daddy Dog” and “Mama Dog” and my parents were “Papa Dog” and “Nanny Dog.” Later, we evolved to actual dog names (for dogs she knew about). My husband became “Mail Carrier Dog” (don’t ask) and I was “Honey Bear” (a golden retriever who lived in our neighborhood). Taylor wanted to be called “Lizzie” (a neighbor’s black lab who was Honey Bear’s daughter) and my parents were “The Bulldog” and “The Weimaraner.”

I remember when I realized she was left-handed like my mother and my husband. I was watching a friend’s two children and they were all coloring together. Taylor was about 2 1/2 and as she colored, she intently watched my friend’s older children as they filled in their coloring sheets. She decided to switch hands to start coloring with her right hand. That lasted all but 10 seconds and that crayon was back in her left hand again. This time it stayed there.

I want all good things for her, just as I do for all of my children. Those wishes are heartfelt, as are the pains of separation I feel as she drove away this morning. With her independence comes my realization that I need to let go and trust that God will take care of her as He has up until now.

Still, I cannot help but see my small little angel girl every time I look at her.

Taylor

She has grown into a beautiful young woman and I know she will do great things in her life.

I am proud and grateful that I can call her my daughter. I look forward to seeing all of the wonderful things she will do.

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