Last Night of Childhood

Tonight is the last night my girls are together at home. Tomorrow Kendall leaves for college and while she will return for breaks and possibly next summer (unless a summer job prevents her), it will be different. Kendall will return as a college student and adult. This, in many ways, is the last night of her childhood.

I am taking this hard. Kendall has been ‘my girl’. God has given me such a gem in her! I enjoy her friendship! I enjoy being together and just talking. She has been such a help to me by starting dinner for me many times while I was still at work. She also helps me care for Sarah. If I can’t give Sarah a shower, she will or she helps me by getting Sarah ready for bed on nights when I am too tired.

More importantly, I wonder how Sarah will deal with Kendall leaving for college. Sarah adores her sister!

Kendall has promised to FaceTime with us so Sarah can see her. I do not know how much Sarah will understand, but this day was bound to come.  My girl has grown up and is ready to fly. Kendall is almost done packing her things. We have boxes by the door ready to go and I wonder what Sarah thinks of all of this.

Even when I was pregnant with the girls, Sarah liked to be close to her. Kendall likes to see my reaction when she says, “Mom, of course we are close! We were womb-mates!” (That made-up word grosses me out!)

But it’s true! Each time I had an ultrasound to make sure the girls were developing on schedule, poor Kendall was squished in the corner. The ultrasound would show her with her head pinned down to her shoulder. She looked so uncomfortable. It was no wonder Kendall went breach at 36 weeks, she was looking for room! Then there was Sarah. Sarah spread herself out like she was doing a spread eagle. More than once when the technician was looking at Kendall (Baby A) a leg would float by, then an arm. I asked if that was Baby A’s leg and she laughed and said, “No, that is Baby B. She is hogging all the room! She doesn’t want to stay on her side.”

When we came home from the hospital with the girls, we thought they would want to sleep together. They had been together for so long, we thought they would miss each other. That great idea lasted two nights. Once again, Sarah hogged all the room. She wiggled and kicked until she was free of her blanket that she was swaddled in and continued to wiggle until she was almost on top of Kendall. Kendall would cry and we would race in. After moving Sarah back, she would do it again…and again. We finally gave up and we separated them.

Now they are being separated by 155 miles. While it is not too far, it feels like 155,000,000 miles to my heart. This is one of those times my heart and head are disagreeing with each other!

This summer, Kendall found a spot near our vacation home with the least amount of light pollution. We went out around midnight as a family to star gaze. It was amazing! We saw shooting stars and the Milky Way. It reminded me of Isaiah 40:26, “Lift your eyes and look to the heavens: Who created all these? He who brings out the starry host one by one, and calls them each by name. Because of his great power and mighty strength not one of them is missing.”

The same God who calls out the stars by name is the same God looking over my girls. Life is just going to be different now. This phase of our lives is ending, but I know in His great power and mighty strength He is in control. While this might be the last night of Kendall’s childhood, there is a bond between them that will always keep them in each other’s hearts that 155 miles cannot weaken. ❤

18 thoughts on “Last Night of Childhood

  1. Laura Imlach

    I wept my way through this post, sharing so many of your feelings even though I know your Momma Bear heart feels them so much more than do I. Kendall is a joy, and she will always be a joy, but you are right, circumstances will be different. Trusting God with you for her, for Sarah, and for you….He knows and loves you all, and will hold you close. I love you, Sistah.

    1. Me, too! Today I just sobbed. She wrote me a note that she left for me to read after I left and it was beautiful. It is joy and sorrow mixed together. Love you my sweet sistah!! ❤

  2. Angela

    So beautiful and bittersweet! Praying for Kendall as she heads off to exciting new adventures and for Sarah and how these changes will impact her. And praying for Mom who is letting go! Love you!

  3. Karla Watson

    I know that heart vs. head problem! Someone told me once “your heart will catch up with your head” and I have found that to be true! And the preparatory grief is the hardest! Praying for you now.

    1. Thank you, sweet friend! Yes, the preparatory grief was the hardest! Seeing her room empty hit me hard. She left things she no longer needed and it was mostly things from her childhood. It went by too fast, didn’t it?!?! How can our kids be grown?

  4. rcpalms@aol.com

    Dear Jill,

    We sure have appreciated your posts. This one moved us deeply. You have been a special mom to your children. You have given each one so much of yourself and helped each one to know the life-giving Savior.

    Will Sarah have any more schooling of any kind? Can she learn a skill? We’ve wondered if she can be taught to sweep the floor or rake the leaves in the yard or even if she could handle some form of work?

    You have been so faithful as Sarah’s mom. Just as she is a gift to you and David, you both have been God’s gift to her. We stand in admiration of you both.

    Love,

    Uncle Roger and Aunt Andrea

    1. Thank you so much, Uncle Roger and Aunt Andrea! Your words are very precious to me! We moved Kendall into her room today and I love how she decorated with Scripture verses. It made my heart very happy! Yes, Sarah will have schooling until she is age 26, which is such a blessing!! The school is working hard in developing a life skill for her. She does like to help garden at the school’s garden, but also shows interest in cooking. There is a program at the school where she can learn how to work in a kitchen. We think she would like that. If there is room in the adult program this fall, we will find out what life skill she will learn. If there is no room in the program, she will remain where she has been. Both are great programs and we are very pleased.

      It was so good to see you in June! It truly was wonderful! I loved our time together! You both are such an example and testimony to me and I am so thankful for you both!
      Much love to you!
      Jill

  5. Pat Vess

    Dear Jill
    Such an impact your words make upon your readers — more than you could possibly know. This one is especially treasured for all who are releasing their treasure from the nest and for those remembering when they did.
    Thank you again for your words that strengthen and encourage. Look forward to each and every one.
    Giving thanks for you. Pat

  6. veronicasimon

    What a heartwarming, engaging, inspiring blog post! After 18 or 19 years of such a close sister relationship, I can imagine the struggle in your heart. So glad we can trust our kids with the Lord and put them in His hands.
    Wish I can see the Milky Way someday.

    1. Thank you so much!!! It is a blessing and reassuring peace that we can trust Him! Yes, seeing the Milky Way was cool! I tried to take a photo but they all came out black. Too funny! It was just a display for our eyes to see! I was amazed how many shooting stars we saw. It was a very cool experience!

  7. Carol Butler

    Thanks for sharing the story of your twins early life. I did not know much of it. Yes, Karen is going to do well at the university. So happy she has this opportunity. What did Sarah think when she saw her sister on the screen?
    Aunt Carol

    1. Thank you Aunt Carol! I am so thankful you are home and praying for you as you recover. Sarah thought at first Kendall was at camp. She waves to her but I am not sure if she truly understands. Yes, we are very happy for Kendall. She is enjoying college life, but we sure do miss her!

  8. People like to say that He doesn’t give us anything that we can’t handle; I say He does. He wants us to learn to depend on Him when life dashes us against the rocks. He is the One and Only who offers hope. Jill, you and David are an example of trusting God through every turn. Thanks for sharing.

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