Watching your children become young adults and head out into the world pulls at your heartstrings in a way I never imagined. My heart tells me it was just yesterday that I was stroking the downy newborn hair of this sweet baby boy. The weight of him in my arms so small and yet alarmingly heavy at the same time…… like holding a tiny acorn and feeling the weight of the mighty oak in your hands. Some part of what our children will become seems be felt in a parent's heart in some capacity. It's a beautiful and humbling journey for sure.

We know the day will come. We can stuff the thought under the the never ending pile of laundry in the corner…… but the day will arrive just the same. Sooner or later it will be here.

I knew the coming of fall would bring the time for us to help a certain young man pack his bags & head out. To begin a dream realized…. to start his story. Even though every ounce of my soul is excited for him…. there is this wee little other part. 

The part that can best be described as that feeling you have when that two wheeled bike leaves your hands for the first time and you watch them peddle off…… all by themselves. There they go. Only this time it's bigger than that. This time it means a brand new quilt and a set of sheets, his own towels & cell phone and the biggest laundry basket I could find. ('cause I know how often teenagers do laundry)

Tomorrow morning we'll load up the car and drive north to drop him off. His sophmore year will be spent at a statewide magnet school. An amazing opportunity for this bright young person. A public boarding school that is a three and a half hour drive from home. And about a zillion miles from this mama's heart.

There are letters, care packages, phone calls, emails and even the tech savvy skype these days. He'll be home for holidays and one long weekend each month…. but this mama is learning a great big lesson in the art of letting go. And yet, when the worry sets heavy in my heart, I think of my own mama….. who has watched me start a life and a family always miles away from where I started. Who never sees her grandchildren nearly as often as she (or we) would like and still manages to keep in touch with them and nourish these amazing beautiful relationships….. and I take a deep breath and think to myself, I can do this. We can do this.

Fly my boy. Fly.


16 thoughts on “fly

  1. And 16 years ago if you could have looked ahead to where he is now, you would have been awestruck and so proud! My heart is with you Steph!


  2. I remember the day I moved out of my home for college. Still 17. I closed the door of my home. My little bedroom neat and sparse and forever changed. My VW bug packed up with all of the essentials. The rest of my great big life waiting for me in the horizon. On the way to my new home, I crossed the path of my mom who was on her morning bus route. She waved. I waved. We both cried.
    So many times my heart aches for her courageous way of letting go of all six of us at each our own times. Even now, the silence that returns after we leave her still hits her just as it did that day. But, she says, over time, she gets used to it.
    Hugs to you. Being a mama is one long journey of forever embracing and letting go.


  3. I feel your pain. Two have left my nest already and my last baby bird leaves in two weeks.My nest will be compleatly empty then.My only reconciling thought is that they are still in driving distance. This is a new season in his life as well as mine.We still need to be our childrens comfort and make our homes that place of solace and comfort that they can return to.I am so thankful we made so many traditions while the kids were growing up. They really rely on those as well.All this being said…..Keep Calm, and Carry On! You have a Kindred Spirit with me!


  4. I talked to him on the phone last night after you had all gone to bed. He’s going to do awesome because you’ve given him the freedom to be the wonderful person that he is; thank you for that.
    Love you!
    P.S. You’re doing a fantastic job at being a mom!


  5. Oh my goodness….. tears are rolling down my cheeks as I read this. I can only hope they always look forward to returning home to visit us. To continue sharing their journey….


  6. Oh be still my aching heart. Your post has touched me so deeply. We’re going through this here as well. It’s the letting go part that’s so hard. One wants to let go to see them fly and then there’s the other part where you just want to hang on.
    This is so fantastic for your boy. What a great accomplishment and he’s so lucky to have you for a mom. Those care packages are going to be amazing. Thinking of you Stephinie.


  7. I do so hope a few of my four will settle close by. I totally agree that home is a haven for them to return to. I have dreams of sitting around our big table with all four kiddos as adults, enjoying a meal. A new season of life, just as beautiful as the one before it. Thank you for your kind words, they touched my heart…


  8. Oh Valarie, I know this feeling must be all too familiar for you. I know just the little hanging on part that you speak of. I reminded myself (many times) “he is so ready for this” and he truly is. It’s so amazing to look into the eyes of your child (young adult) and see this independent passionate soul ready to take on the world. It’s just beautiful.


  9. Oh my, I know that one day I will be faced with this same moment, and I hope that I handle it as gracefully as you have. Be well my friend, and many loving thoughts coming your way through this time of transition.


  10. It was an emotional day in so many ways…. At one point on the drive home I got all teared up and said to my husband "you know, I'm not crying because I'm sad….. I'm crying because it's all so big." Thank you for your thoughts…. much love.


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