My Heart Is Full

It all started Friday night. Well, really, it all started nearly nineteen years ago. But, Friday night I was wrapping up washing all the clothing my oldest, Ben, was going to be taking with him to college the following day. Some dirty clothes but mostly clean clothes that had just been in his closet for a while; all of it. Blankets and afghans and bath towels and new socks and new underwear. It all went through the wash. I was standing there putting fresh-out-of-the-dryer clothes on hangers as I always do. I grabbed one of his long-sleeved, flannel shirts out of the dryer and looked at it as I placed it on the hanger and memories came rushing through my mind. Every time he wears it, he will come to me and stick his arm and unbuttoned long sleeve out towards me and say, “Mama, can you roll me, please?” And, of course, I do. Now, I have had some emotional moments through the summer thinking about the last 18 years and all the memories and lessons and love that have been shared and thinking about him leaving in the fall. I’ve teared up and been misty-eyed more than once. But I really hadn’t cried. Until Friday, while holding a flannel shirt. I lost it. I cried like a baby. In my laundry room. By myself. Because of a flannel shirt. I know it sounds stupid, but the thought that I won’t be able to do that for him anymore and that he is now on his own and a ton of other thoughts were rushing at me so fast I couldn’t control them. And all I could think about was whether or not HE knows that he will be all right? Because I do. I know he will be more than all right. But does HE know? So, this week, I want to use this as a sort of open letter to my son. To help HIM know.

First things first, buddy. You have Jesus in your heart. That has nothing to do with me or Dad or your brother, Franklin. You chose that. And because of that, you will always have more than just your conscience to guide you. You have the amazing Holy Spirit of the Living God dwelling in you; helping to guide and comfort you. You will call on Him more than you realize in this moment. And He is always faithful. He will never let you down. He will always be there. And you will always represent Him. So do it to the very best of your ability. Sometimes, we are the only glimpse of Jesus people will ever see. Make sure that you are doing all you can to let people know He is the only true source of love and life and light. Be His hands and feet to a hurting and lost and dying world. He will give you exactly what you need to do just that. Use whatever stage God is preparing you for to point always to Him. You have all you need within you. Keep the vertical relationship between you and God first always. The horizontal relationships you have with other people are dependent on that. If you aren’t right with God, you CANNOT be right with others, no matter how hard you try. Love with His love. Live with His life. Shine with His light. 

Never stop working hard. Whether that is on your craft, skill, hobby, or whatever is at the core of who you are. Always want what you want more than the guy next to you wants it. And always do whatever it is you’re doing because you LOVE it. Not because you want or need the recognition or praise of man. God’s glory is far more important than that. And at the end of the day, if He is pleased with you and your efforts, that is all that truly matters anyway. Remember what we have always told you; if it’s worth having, it’s worth working hard (and waiting) for. That will always be true. You have some big ambitions and dreams and goals. Don’t be afraid of them. Don’t be afraid of what it will take to achieve all of them. Just put your head down, stay humble, and get to work. The rest will fall in line. 

Always remember that I loved you first. I knew I wanted you. SO MUCH. What I didn’t know is how much I needed you! You made me a mom. You made me prove to myself that I could do this parenting gig. Your little 6 pound body packed a punch that I didn’t expect. When the doctor handed you to me I had NO CLUE that I could instantly love someone as much as I loved you. I love your dad. I love my parents. I love my family. But, I had never felt such an overwhelming love until your tiny, perfect body in my arms allowed it to wash over me. I have been drowning in that love ever since. I remember the passage in the Bible talking about Mary, when she had Jesus, and how she “kept all these things and pondered them in her heart” and I understood that on a new level. You taught me how to love something and care for something so much that I forgot all about myself. And loving you made loving your brother even more special. I have loved watching you love your brother and take such exceptional care of him. You’ve been a great big brother. That won’t change. There are things that distance can’t change. You’ve taught Franklin how to be a great brother just because you are such a great brother to him. And I couldn’t be more proud of you for all of that.

You will have friendships, and relationships, and kinships, and eventually will find the place you will call home. And FYI: that “place” will have NOTHING at all to do with location. It will be more about the people you share that location with. God has amazing things planned out for you. You will experience victory and defeat. Sometimes all in one day. But you will learn from every one of them. You will learn how to dust yourself off after falling. You will learn how to celebrate the victories with humility and you will learn to share all of it with the people in your life who mean the most to you.

I cried when you came into this world and I cried when I watched you walk into your new life at college. Almost nineteen years ago, you filled my arms and my heart. I never knew how empty my arms were before they held you. I have held you as tightly as I could for as long as I could, full well knowing that, eventually, I would have to let go. And nothing in life has been quite as hard as that. But it is okay. It is what is supposed to happen. It’s what we prepared you for. I need you to know that I love you and that love isn’t contingent on what you do or what you don’t do. And it never will be. I have more than enough love to give you whenever you need it most. Love is such an amazing thing. Giving it away somehow multiplies what you still have in the store house. It makes no logical sense whatsoever, but it is the absolute truth. And I really don’t know how so many conflicting emotions can exist in the same heart at the same time. I feel so happy and so sad all at the same time. I feel such sweet pride for you and yet humility when thinking about God allowing us to be your parents and what He has done in you already. Those are just a few of the things I am feeling. And it’s all magnified because of love.

I want you to have fun. You are a great young man and I am so proud of you. Go. Do all the things. Feel all the feelings. Learn all the lessons. Do all the good. Love all the people. Be the best YOU you can be. And most of all know that while my arms will miss you, my heart will always keep you. My arms may be a little more empty right now. But, my heart? Oh, buddy. My heart is full.

#loveyourjourney #youreworthit #bettermewithNewYouCBD #Endo30 #itsuptoyou

One thought on “My Heart Is Full

  1. OMG Lacy. You write so well, you amaze me! So beautifully said. Made me tear up with this one. Love you my friend ❤️


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