My life long goal is to let go and let God. Not always easy. Even harder still? Letting go and letting my grown up, adult aged children fly, on their own, with no interference, and no cleaning up the debris after them.
As a first time parent, when my own were newly born, the thought of them growing up and soaring from the nest seemed like it would take eons. Today, my newbies are now 26 and 19, living life on their terms, seeking the dreams of their hearts and moving further and further away from me.
A double edged sword…for I want them to be independent. I don’t want to live my life vicariously through theirs. I have my own life I am living. But here’s the dilemma, the hardest part of letting go, as a parent, as a mom is standing still, on the sidelines, watching them fall, make mistakes, fail. God, how I want to run, pick them up, kiss their wounds and make it better!!! Despite my emotional upheaval, I don’t. For I know my interference will destroy lessons life is teaching, hard as well as easy.
The harsh reality, for a parent, is kids cannot and will not stay little. I believe, the biggest mistake parents make, and I am one, is not letting go early enough, but continuing to give, give, give instead of watch kids struggle. I know how much strength a person gets from struggling but oh so hard witnessing it to one you love.
However in observing other parents, I find myself moving towards the side of letting go, letting be and not interfering. What I thought would be detrimental, sometimes is, yet the benefits my sons are gaining will stay with them for life. Just think, the first time the ties are cut are when the umbilical cord is severed, making two halves of what was once whole. Two independents…a mom and a child, the way it should be. And little by little, the child learns ways to be himself, offering the mom situations in which she can begin the journey of letting go.
I believe no matter how old the child, letting go is a day by day struggle a parent needs to move through. I remember when I mentioned getting a divorce, the first time, my dad tried talking me out of it saying, ‘You don’t want to do that.’ Yea, even at 49, he was still trying to protect me. Now he realizes some of why the marriage ended. I do remember him saying, when I announced I was divorcing, ‘I understand.’ In those two simple words, he released me and I took the first step in doing what I felt was right for me.
Letting go…a challenge made easier with pray, letting God, and accepting, without comment or criticism or opinion or judgment, the life each of my sons chooses to live. My dad understood. It’s my turn to understand.