Monday, July 14, 2014
An empty room, and a new chapter
A new chapter of life has begun for J. and me. Our son, our older child, moved out over the weekend. The long hall in the picture leads to the room containing the few items he left behind.
I thought I had great plans for this room. An enlargement of our library? A spot for yoga, meditation, or even a good place to do group spiritual direction? I intended to get right in there to pull up the nasty denim-blue rug which 16 years of life with our son has virtually destroyed. Those awful curtains he wanted? They're goners. I was going to blast through there like a small tornado.
Instead, something blasted through me. I stood in the middle of my son's room, and felt as emptied out as the space. J. felt the same. Tears came off and on. We watched movies and ate comfort food. I ate ice cream three times yesterday.
Today I feel better. Still empty, but with better balance. Grieving the change, but in proportion.What is parenthood but an emptying out, a kenosis? We do as much we can for our kids, help and encourage them over the rough spots in their lives. We weep and rejoice. We help them plan and dream, and we sometimes watch them spin out of control, with unfortunate consequences. We've done all that, over the years.
I guess God feels like this, emptying Godself to create and sustain us. We please God; we disappoint God. All parents know this feeling.
Well, our fledgling has gone off to join his younger sister in adulthood. May blessings go with him. I console myself that he's only 40 minutes away.
But that rug ... I'm thinking plain hardwood might be better.