“No, it doesn’t fit right, does it?” I said to my daughter, standing behind her, looking in the mirror. The smirk on her face was enough proof she agreed. I hoisted the navy blue floor length dress with gold sequin embellishments over her head, fastened the straps on the hanger while she chose another from the heap.
Sitting down on the stool in the corner, I scrolled through emails, interrupted by someone talking loudly on their cell phone in the dressing room beside us.
We looked at each other and silently laughed.
And left the first store we visited with two dresses on hangers under plastic. I think that could be a first. Hopefully, not the last.
Murielle celebrates 6,570 days on Friday. It’s her 18th birthday.
Only a handful of those days can be accounted for without H and I present in them. Not because we’re control freaks but because we enjoy each other.
In 93 days she will graduate from high school and start the journey toward complete independence. I was fine with that until yesterday.
Creating a senior ad for her yearbook, I became enthralled with the stunning photos Kelly Sauer snapped of Murielle last summer in Charleston. Light dipped slowly down, casting ethereal shadows on painted walls of concrete as a backdrop. Aren’t they gorgeous?
But the longer I worked on the ad, anxiety strangled my peace — a sign something is off, pay attention.
The anxiety isn’t about her leaving to go to college, a lack of trust or confidence. Her character is proof she will achieve success in whatever she chooses.
Or because I find my identity in motherhood; those who know me will testify that I don’t. I’m not concerned for the possible scenario’s I envision without my influence or presence in them, no God is bigger than that.
It’s knowing we will both enter a new season of life without the sacrament of presence. The fear I’ve taken the closeness for granted — that’s why I’m uneasy. Be anxious for nothing . . . I read it today from the Gospel.
It seems the value of someone’s life comes into clear focus most often in loss or the possibility of it. And perhaps that is the redemption. We see the value of the unique place someone carves out in our lives when separated like an artist standing back from his work for perspective.
In close proximity, the imprint of another’s life is often lost in the microscope of imperfection. But with distance the range of impact from their essence looms wide and expansive.
They leave us changed by walking away and letting the dust of their lives settle on us.
It is no coincidence that our #LentChallenge starts in the book of Matthew today. Two years ago, Murielle gave me a necklace with Matthew 6:26 engraved on the back. Even then, God knew that verse would be a comfort; a reminder that nothing is random or insignificant when love is the motive — like finding the perfect prom dress.
Jesus says, Therefore do not be anxious about tomorrow, for tomorrow will be anxious for itself. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble. What can you let go of today and trust Him for the outcome?
Join us today for Redemptions Beauty Book Club where we’ll be talking about the scriptures that stand out for each of us as we read the New Testament together for the #LentChallenge with Margaret Feinberg.