As you let them go…
The last one is the hardest.
Tiny shoes, tiny backpacks,
Eyes that shine with excitement or eyes that shy with fear
It matters not.
The hard is in the parting, whether grinning or clinging.
The parking lot is packed. The chatter of small voices is joyous and nervous.
The heavy air of change swirls.
Down the hall, around the last turn and you are there, standing at that door, with the smiling teacher beckoning.
Welcoming him, hand outstretched to take him–
Away from me.
A leaden change of empty days foreseen.
I sit on my porch and watch the neighbor kids walk to the corner with Dad. A purple backpack for the tiny one, a red one for big brother. Then he gets in his truck and waits and watches.
I can hear it coming…the chugging and then the loud squeak of aged brakes, and they step up onto the dingy yellow behemoth and are gone.
He sits for a moment more, staring out the windshield as if reflecting, and then eases down the driveway and disappears.
I write as I remember.
The excitement with the first.
The reality of the emptiness with the second. The redefining myself as mother with a day full of kids, to mother on weekdays from seven to eight-thirty and three-thirty to nine.
The letting go is hard…
Before we blink we are headed down the highway. The preacher following in our car and me riding beside this young man of mine with the stubble and easy smile.
The miles fly by as I reflect on his childhood and teenagerhood and wonder how I could have gotten here so fast. From slip-n-slide birthday parties, to drivers licenses and graduations.
The landscape is different, the trees and climate foreign, the beauty of a campus too far from home, but his chosen home nonetheless. A christian campus we feel good about in-between the times we feel bad…
And then we are there,
At the place where he steps away.
Away from the parents who have loved and nurtured him.
Away from our structured lives to find the life he was meant to live.
The one that will shape him into a man,
A man that will find God on his own terms, and a faith that will carry him into the future– A faith that can never be as strong if I don’t let go.
And me, a mom who puts her trust in a Lord of promises, always learning, full of mistakes, yet ever growing,
Like the dad in the truck,
I do the only thing I can now as time marches on.
I sit and watch and pray,
Then call upon the sometimes dusty faith tucked deep inside this mother’s heart.
And as I remind myself that God is in control, not me,
I find peace.
Psalm 86:11 Teach me your way, Lord, that I may rely on your faithfulness; give me an undivided heart, that I may fear your name.
Proverbs 3:3 Let love and faithfulness never leave you; bind them around your neck, write them on the tablet of your heart.
-What or who are you struggling with letting go of?
-Pray this daily, “Teach me your way Lord so I can learn to rely not on self but on your faithfulness.”