I try not to look too long, or too longingly for that matter. Its the babies that give me that lumpy feeling in my throat, that 'you are sooo lucky' look towards the mom.
If I can, I try to hug my bigger than ever five and a half year old, ruffling his curly black hair and smelling his little boy smell. He quickly wrestles free to demand my attention and attend to his rapidly growing freedom. No training wheels! Casting his fishing line, running to second base in T-ball, taking the big lift in downhill skiing... his roots are solid and I revel in his new found independence. During hip hop class he asked to be nearby, but not watching. And I know its the right step forward, I'm doing my best to encourage this, and yet I am often left reminding myself to breath.
Growing up I hated long rides in the car, after 15 minutes nausea and headaches were unavoidable. When I started to drive it was a great relief to find I did not feel the same way when I was behind the wheel. Over the years I tend to do most of the driving, fulfilling perhaps more often than not a need to control my circumstances. Control equals less anxiety, less anxiety equals less illness etc. And yet, my predicament has currently slapped me upside the head as my smart and certainly capable daughter looks longingly at the steering wheel anytime it is with her proximity. There have been many times as a mother I have had to give up control, believe I was doing the right thing for a better purpose... so why is this so hard? Why hadn't I thought of this before? No warnings? red flags?
I climb out of the drivers side a little reluctantly and hand over a little slice of independence for my daughter.
Maybe I'm in denial that she is sixteen (and a half) or that this is part of the process of letting go, of finding her independence of moving forward and- this sounds familiar right?
Is it me or are my children somehow experiencing similar challenges and growth spurts?Is there a greater message here? Motherhood = a necessary process of loosing control of the environment my children enter into? their own desire for new experiences to challenge themselves, having nothing to do with me at all. I know, as it should be. Sigh.
I think I am missing winter a little.