Friday, January 9, 2009

Learning to Let Go

                                                        Skating Lessons...





Its one of those things they don't tell us as parents. "They" being the ones who have gone before us in the parenting journey. They tell us childhood goes by quick. They warn "one day you are changing diapers and the next day you are waving good-bye as they go off to college..." You expect those goodbyes. The move to another town, perhaps, or another state. The driver's license, the cell phone, the first sleep over. Really though? It comes way before all of those. And it comes in much smaller ways. Important nonetheless, just smaller.

I was privileged enough to watch my cousin's 3-year-old take to the ice for the very first time. When its your own child, you sometimes get so caught up in the unfolding events, you forget to really watch. To pay attention. So it was a true honor to be there and get to see the nuances of how it happens. True to most hockey players in the making Keenen just couldn't wait to get out there and go. His feet were going in all different directions... and his teacher was there to hold him as he would be about to go down. He did fall a few times. But she wasn't far behind him and soon he'd be in her grasp again. She'd help him achieve balance and they'd march along. And the rest of us were there watching, cheering from the side lines. And then it happened. HE LET GO... and as I clicked with the camera while holding my breath... he stood there alone. And the look on his face? Complete self-satisfaction. He did IT. He let go. And he discovered he was okay. And none of us had to go charging out there to rescue him. He was perfectly safe. And in that brief moment, I realized I just witnessed a HUGE lesson. The willingness to let go. And know you are going to be okay. As parents, its part of our job. To teach them its okay to let go. I forget sometimes the beauty of letting go. In that brief moment a lesson was learned. It just took me awhile to realize, Keenen wasn't the only one to learn the beauty of letting go that day. I was lucky enough to learn right alongside of him.

5 comments:

  1. That was great! I think I vacillate between letting go and holding on. Sometimes I do well, sometimes, I really stink at letting go. Especially with my son! He is the baby and I try to remind myself that it will hurt our relationship if I try to hold on too tight to him. This was a good lesson. Thank you.

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  2. Anita,

    I'm so happy to have you back amongst all of us! Yes, that is the perfect word... vacillate. Finding the balance is the tricky part... its more encompassing than just letting go. Thanks for the additional insight.

    Love that photo of you!

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  3. Love that you see such beautiful things in such simple moments...

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  4. Letting go is right up there with change in my book. I'm not so good at it.
    This gave me a good picture that I'll remember~Thanks friend~

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  5. "Simple" and foretelling of the journey, Gitz. And yes, The letting go DOES equate to the constant state of emerging change in parenting, Robin. Spoken like a mom with much parenting wisdom from having raised her own family!

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