Saturday, May 24, 2014

The Way I Loved You // all the way through

WRITTEN A YEAR AGO //

Two years of being a home-school "mom" (read: sister). Every time a season wraps up, I can't help but reflect on it...
We've all grown a lot, haven't we? You guys learned to stick to a schedule and check in with me, to work together and to ask questions, to be corrected and to earn privileges.
It's been hard. You didn't like getting your independence reigned in, and I didn't like the fits that came as a result of reigning it in. You didn't like having to do school five days a week, and I didn't like hearing all the grumbles.
It's been good. We've all learned to communicate better, to say I'm Sorry, to hug it out, to take a breather, to have mercy, to do what's right, to think of others first. We've grown to trust each other enough to make mistakes and learn from them and move on together, and never stop loving -- even when we're arguing.
It's been messy. Arguments, bad attitudes, frustration, piles of dishes, stacks of laundry, cat food and dog food and caked on-to the stove food, giving up easily and getting feelings hurt.
It's been wonderful. Snuggled up, laughing, sharing things we're learning, having adventures and backwards days and movie marathons, racing for the mail, talking and taking long walks.
Here we are. We made it through. We've gained wisdom and knowledge and life experience together and that can't be taken away. I'm moving out and you two are moving on, onto freshman year and junior year, and all that your futures hold. I'm ready for a new adventure, but I sure don't regret a moment I've spent at home with you two. The preparation and experience has been invaluable. Learning that motherhood will truly be the hardest and most rewarding job of my life, that I won't get it perfect, and that the relationships and trust and love that is developed as you muddle through it, learning from mistakes and showing mercy and always speaking love, is what matters in the end. Gaining those deep relationships with you, my baby brother and little sister, are more special to me than you will ever know. Someday I'm sure you'll look back and recognize what I have sacrificed to do this for you -- and, believe me, it has felt like sacrifice -- but I want you to know that it was worth it to me. Because loving people means sacrificing for them. And I love you.
When you look back on these two years with me as your teacher, I hope you will see that...
...that's the way I loved you.

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