It’s 1984 and high school graduation is behind me. These boys I’m dating are not marriage material but I’m far from saying, “I do” to anyone. I’m 19 years old which is the same age my daughter Grace is today and I was not about to do the norm and by norm I mean marriage right out of high school or college. The gym is my second home, I’ve just learned to drive a car, and the world is now calling my name. To speed this up, the next 8 years are filled with traveling, dating, dancing, laughter, and memories of lessons learned and lessons taught…sorry boys I never meant to hurt you but you were the path that led me to my soul mate!
All I can think about now is marriage! A blind date? Ok, haven’t done that yet, why not! Thank you Lord he’s handsome and tall. He’s making me laugh, ok that’s a plus. He has a career not just a job, another plus. The final test…does he have a relationship with the same God I serve? Well, it would be something I witnessed. He walked down to the front of the church and I was honored to see him give his life to Christ while on our 3rd date! We were married 6 months later.
Now 23 years, 2 kids, a son, a daughter later we had our ups, downs, many blessings, laughter, failures, farewells to love ones who left us way to early, quick trips to Texas Children’s Hospital, friends moved away, job loss, several homes taken right from under us, financial loss, career change for the better, major surgeries, heartbreaks, graduations, car accidents, floods, snow, and many many wrinkles later.
I may be in an empty nest trying to find myself now but I didn’t get here without the hard work of pouring the foundation for their future and ours. This empty nest is a blessing. A blessing for my wrinkles. It’s a pat on my back for raising a well rounded responsible son and daughter. The silence is loud and the nights are long but it’s showing me that my wrinkles tell the story of how I got here! This empty house is not a punishment but an accomplishment!
A special thanks to Debi Caballero for the title! I love you!