A little more than five years ago, I stepped into a few major transitions in my life. My youngest child graduated from the parent-involved K-8 school where our family had been heavily involved for 15 years with all three of our children. I left the staff of the missionary organization I had been a part of since graduating from college in 1985, and we found out we were going to be grandparents, a title we weren’t ready for because our son was not married, but that God knew we needed.
Because of their situation, my son and his girlfriend had already decided before they even told us of the pregnancy that they would give this baby up for adoption, because there was no way they could afford childcare and the other expenses that come with having a child.
That’s when the most major transition for us took place. After prayerful consideration, my husband and I agreed to provide care for this baby, our grandson, while both his parents were at work.
And so began our adventure of caring for this sweet baby boy five days a week from late afternoon to whenever one of them got off their food-service shift. I hadn’t planned for my near-empty-nest days to look like they do, but God is good, and there’s absolutely nothing like hearing my now 4-year-old little guy say, “Nana, I love you.” Be still my heart.
Transitions are inevitable in life. Some are welcome–an exciting new job, marriage, a welcome baby. But some are dreaded–the death of a spouse, an unexpected move, a job loss. Both kinds bring stress.
This month, as school children across the nation transition from the lazy days of summer to the rigors of school days, The Redbud Post is tackling the topic of “Transitions.” In a bit of an extended issue–because we had so much to say–our writers write about becoming a caregiver for elderly parents, moves, marriage, the wilderness, and everything in between. And how God is there through it all.
The lessons? Take care of yourself, trust that God sees you, and find joy in the journey.
I’m four and a half years into my Nana adventure. My son and his girlfriend are no longer together, but they equally share care for their son. I have him four days a week instead of five, and in the last year I also took on a fulltime job instead of being a contractor. Is it always easy? No. Am I often tired? Absolutely. But God is still good.
Thanks for reading. Let our writers know what you think.
And may God lead you and guide you through all the transitions you face in life.
Editor in Chief
I can’t imagine what a difficult transition that would be, to go from empty nest to full one once more. I love the thought of God bringing such good out of it. Thanks for reminding us of that.