“May what I do flow from me like a river, no forcing and no holding back, the way it is with children.” ~ Rainer Maria Rilke
We often attempt to control people, especially as a parent we tend to try to control our children’s choices. It’s understandable to want to teach them morals and manners, but sometimes we try to sway their college choices and even decide careers for them. The art of letting go and allowing our offspring to lead their own lives can be both painful and joyous.
When we see our children in the flow of life it is liberating and beautiful. Sometimes it is only in looking back we see synchronicity working in their lives. My youngest son is an example of this. You all may remember my talking about trying to sway his choices a few years back…it only now I see his selections put him where he is supposed to be.
He originally chose a college about four hours from where we live while we had hoped he’d go to a private school near home. It ended up he didn’t like college, and played with the idea of joining the Army. Don’t ask me why, perhaps it was a parenting thing, but I just didn’t feel a military career was up his alley. Then again, maybe it had something to do with his best friend trying to get him to join with him rather than it being a dream of his own. I prayed and prayed he wouldn’t enlist. On day three after the announcement of his plans, he tore his MCL and ACL playing football, not exactly what I’d planned to thwart his efforts; but none the less he had to have surgery and much recovery time which changed his plans.
A couple of years after the knee injury, he met a girl attending the private college I’d wanted him to attend. Sounds as if he was meant to meet her. They have now been dating for three years. During this time, my son has had a steady job but decided he wanted to become a master electrician. He was just admitted to a program about a thousand miles away. It is near where his girlfriend’s family lives. My son’s program is five years long, and it will take his girlfriend five years to obtain her MFA and Doctorate. Today, the hubby is helping them travel across several states to settle in to pursue their dreams together.
There were many bits and pieces of the process of them getting to this point, but it seems it has all fallen into place. That happens when you are in the flow.
This teaches me to sit back and watch, rather than trying to guide my children to my desired outcome. God knows much better than me where they need to be and when. It’s freeing not to try to be in control.
Though my youngest hasn’t lived at home for several years, it’s still difficult to let go. We gave our children roots, and it’s time to let them use their wings to fly where life takes them.