When A Broken Heart Yearns For A Break

From my heart to yours this Thanksgiving

My daughter’s normal morning 3-day-a-week school routine begins.

“You awake?” I text to her from downstairs, under the covers, snug as a bug in a rug.

“Yup,” she texts back.

One foot slips out from under the covers, then the other. Un-snug as a bug out of a rug. Leaning over the bathroom counter, I get partially ready for the day, make-up and hair, then I’m off to scan the living room and kitchen to see if my daughter has left any school work there that she might need for the day. I grab a bottled water out of the garage fridge and a granola bar from the pantry for her.

My heart yearns for her success.

The door to her stairs/bedroom billows open and the rush begins. I open the garage door, hug and kiss her goodbye, shoving the water and granola bar into her backpack. She backs the car out, careful not to hit a tree. I wave goodbye and blow kisses to her … she stalls the car to wave and return my kisses. We realize it’s our last gaze at each other. 

That little black car zooms off down our driveway, kicking up leaves, beginning that 35-minute commute by busy, 18-wheeler interstate.

And I pray, like every dayLord, watch over her, protect her, get her home to me.

My heart yearns for her safety.

But this particular day, after some 5 minutes have passed, my phone buzzes with a call. It’s her.


“Hey, Mom.” Her tone is urgent. “I left my driver’s license in your car. I’ll be home in two minutes. Will you get it for me?”

I run out to the car. There it is. I open the garage again.

My mind starts going wild. Will she be late for school now? Will she drive too fast to get there on time? She’s almost home … she said 2 minutes. I’ll save her time.

My heart yearns for every good and perfect thing for her.

With barely a moment’s thought, I take off down my long, wet driveway, barefoot, in my pajamas. I’ll meet here there at the end of the road. Lord, please don’t let me step on a stick or an acorn. As I near the end, I see her car between trees. 

She pulls into the driveway. She sees me running. Her expression? Priceless.

My heart yearns to make her smile.

“I can’t back out, Mom.”

“Yes, you can. I’ll help you.” I walk out into the middle of our county road in my pajamas, guiding her, motioning to her which way to turn her wheels. She does it. I knew she could do it. 

My heart yearns for her to be confident.

She zooms off again. My prayer goes up once again.

At the end of the day, she barrels through the door, crying. Wrapping her arms around me, she spills her precious heart. She barely missed being in an auto accident. I sink in despair over the details her precious eyes witnessed. My fractured heart looks heavenward, and my prayer shoots upthank you, Lord, for bringing her home to me.

My heart yearns for peace. 

For her. For me.

Every week, I hear her near misses or what she’s witnessed on the road. My heart can barely take it. 

My right eyelid’s been flickering like a fluorescent light for days now.

It’s all worry, y’all.

My daughter’s first semester of college has been the hardest change for me. If there is one downside to homeschooling that I’ve discovered, it’s that a mama’s heart is too sheltered. It’s the mama’s heart that’s cause for concern. And the heart stays invested regardless of your child’s age.

But she loves it. She loves every single thing about itthe school, her classes, the commute, time in her car, lunch out with friendswhich is all that matters. And I’m so thankful. 

But this mama thought she knew how to lean on God. This mama’s heart is learning to lean, lean on my Savior, more and more. 

After Thanksgiving, my daughter will only have about two weeks left of school, before she has a month break. I’m so grateful because

My broken heart yearns for a break. 

What has you concerned lately? And can you imagine our Father’s love over us?


Happy Thanksgiving, y’all. And many thanks to all who entered the magazine subscription giveaway from the last post. Thank you for playing. I’m blowing kisses your way. I cherish you. 

And the winners are …

Cindy Hasko and Norma Brumbaugh Wieland

Woohoo! I pray you are blessed by the magazine all year long.

20 thoughts on “When A Broken Heart Yearns For A Break

  1. Just love this! As mums we never switch off regardless of our children's age. My eldest is 30 but I still worry till she is home safe. In fact I worry more about all 3 of my daughters since they became adults. I guess it the fact we lose control of them once they reach 18. We can't protect them as we used to. I worry all the time about them. And it's tiring. Loved this post xx ❤️


  2. Susanna! Just seeing your name here is such a huge blessing for me. Yes … you think once they're grown, you'll relax some. They're grown-ups. But … no. She texts me when she gets some place safe, and then she texts when she's starting home. I'm grinning here. So now, I'm thinking … maybe I won't be so concerned over her safety when she gets married … but I have a feeling that concern is a life-long companion. 🙂 xoxo Thank you for blessing my day.


  3. I can so identify with the heart of a homeschooling mom, Shelli! I cried for days after each of my boys left home–even though none of them moved far. College marks the end of an era and a change in the relationship. They will always need you, just in a different way. What no one prepares you for is how much we still need them and want to be needed!


  4. Andrew … ahhh! “The only way a heart can break is if it's learned to love” … yes. Beautiful, Andrew. I'm continually blessed by you, and I'm so thankful to have you in my life. Thanksgiving blessings to you and Barbara. We made it another year, Andrew!


  5. Oh, Becky … I can't imagine the day they leave home for good. For good as not living under the same roof anymore, ever again. Ugh. I know I'll cry, too. I told my youngest the other day that I want to get and stay real good at creating the Thanksgiving meal, real good, so that they'll always want to come home. 🙂 xoxo


  6. Awww, Shelli. Such a beautiful post. You are such a good mom. I love that your heart is for your daughters. For their success. Their protection. Their confidence to grow. That's my heart for my boys, but I confess, I don't always express it as such. Sigh.

    There are some different things boys need in the teen years than girls, but they always need to know they are loved. They need to know their mamas (and their daddys) love them. No matter what. Because they make some heart-breaking mistakes, say some hard-to-hear things.

    But we will always love them, right?

    Have a wonderful Thanksgiving, my precious friend!


  7. This is so beautiful Shelli. The heart of a mama loves their child so much. I am going to be and feel the same way as you do. I already lean into God~Jesus so hard, I can't even imagine how much more I will lean into Christ when my son is older. You are such a blessing to me. I love all of the photos that you post. This is the first time I read your blog & this is so beautiful. 🙂 Happy Thanksgiving to you & yours'!! xoxo


  8. Cindy, you bless me so much. I'm so glad I know you. Yes, I was just saying the other day that I miss the little, carefree days. The days of play dates. But as one of my friends kept telling me–each stage just gets better and better. But in the older stage, there is definitely more opportunity for stress. 🙂 xoxo


  9. Jeanne, I think you said it perfectly … the difference between boys and girls. They both need entirely different things. I probably wouldn't act like this with boys. 🙂 And yes, we just keep loving them … letting words fall to the floor. Because we know they love us and don't mean half of what they say. Love, love, love. And I love you. You bless my life.


  10. Dear Shelli, this is so how the way it is. My oldest is thirty-six and I still worry about him, how he's doing overseas, is he depressed, lonely, or struggling? And my youngest, nineteen going on thirty, thinks she can handle anything, but I know she walks in a sometimes dark parking lot when she gets off work, and I worry about who may know her routine and wish her harm. But always we pray, especially when they are new drivers on busy highways. It's the caring mother's journey. The trust grows and the fears lessen as we anchor our souls in our Haven of Rest.

    Thank you again for this lovely gift. It is an honor to receive the magazine. I know I love it already!

    Happy Thanksgiving. I hope it is extra lovely.


  11. Ohhhhh, boy. Do I understand this post! Yes! Yes! Yes! Felt this way as our girls were leaving for college. (Our son lived at home and went, so that's a little different).

    I think surely, we stay in constant prayer, don't we?

    I've been praying over one of my brothers a lot lately. I'm his big sister. Sometimes it feels like I raised him. :/

    So much love my friend. Would love to meet you and your beautiful girls one day!!


  12. Yes, new drivers especially. I grew up in a small city and never ventured off far when I was learning to drive. But things have changed so much from when I was a kid. I sometimes wonder if maybe she should go live on campus to keep from having to commute three days a week, but then I wonder … what would her eyes witness there? I think I'd be more concerned, knowing me. 🙂 Thank you for sharing your concerns, too, and letting me know that I'm not alone in this. And I pray the magazine blesses your life all year long. 🙂


  13. Julie, we always have so much in common. I have a younger brother that I often feel like I raised in many ways. My mom would probably disagree. But he and I were very close. Not close in age, but close. I'm 8 years older than he is. And well, him being the baby … made him so special to my heart. And I've been praying over him, too … his health. I don't know your brother's issues, but I'm praying over him right now. So much love to you … Happy Thanksgiving, Jewels. xoxo


  14. I love your mama-heart, dear Shelli. You're more devoted than I am because my boys don't like me to help too much (They're real men now.)This morning I was all-a-worry about one of my sons because I thought he may be sleeping in. I asked my husband if our son works later on Saturdays, and it turns out he does. 🙂 I was so relieved because I know he likes to be on time (It's a new job, too.). I don't think mamas truly rest until Heaven. 😉 I'm loving your pictures–pure elegance. xo
    Blessings & hugs ~ Wendy


  15. Ah Wendy, I had similar thoughts as the mother of boys (Left my license in Mom's car? Not to worry, I won't need it). I've always said that letting 'em drive is the worst thing next to childbirth. And we measure labor in hours. Driving is a much longer worry-line.

    But they are God's boys, and ultimately they answer to him, not me.


  16. Shirlee … “driving is a much longer worry-line” … yes. Oh, yes. It's raining this morning, and I'm praying over my daughter. I'll be so relieved to get the text stating, “I made it.” Ugh. But yes, they are God's. And on to continually training my youngest daughter to drive … not sure I'm strong enough for all this. 🙂


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