The Art of Letting Go–Some Beautiful Wisdom From a Mom

My childhood home was set back ¼ mile from the highway on a dirt road. It was a beautiful, old farmhouse that my mother painstakingly restored. But it was secluded. I didn’t have anyone next door to play with. Then, the summer before fourth grade a new development went up. Some of the homes were already complete. Since it was paved, it was the perfect place to take my roller skates. One day while skating, I noticed another girl who looked my age–also on roller skates. We smiled in that shy way kids do. We did the “dance”…skating, then looking at each other, then skating some more. Eventually a “hi” came out. Then a “My name is…What’s yours?” Before I knew it, we were skating around the circle together.

Kirsten is my oldest childhood friend. Our lives grew apart, but she is one of those people who I can pick up where we left off. She married a Mexican man and made a life for herself in San Cristobal de Las Casas, Mexico. She has three beautiful boys. We haven’t seen each other in years, but we have that history.

None of this is interesting to anyone, but she did send me this email the other day and her words were so wise, I had to share. I posted recently about how hard it is to let go as our kids grow. But her words were a source of comfort and strength to me. They always have been. Here goes:

Kirsten and Alex post-trip

I just survived Alex’s 10-day long school trip to the Caribbean.  I didn’t go; parents aren’t allowed to.  Of course, I’d have been a willing chaperon but that’s against the tradition.  At the beginning of the year, we were informed that part of the graduation celebration from elementary school was a trip all around the Yucatan peninsula visiting Mayan Ruins, Cenotes (sacred DEEP water sources where the Mayans prayed and sacrificed people), Eco parks, and historical cities.  I didn’t have such an indulgent graduation even from University!  Pepe and I said, NO FREAKING WAY!!  It’s 2012 and between the narcos and the kidnappers, potential tsunamis, malaria, and the fact that Alex has never had a swimming lesson and can only kind of, sort of, tread water, the chances seemed slim that he’d make it back in one ”tweener” piece.

Well, to make a long story short, I just lived through a parental milestone moment.  Not only because of the courage we had to muster up to let him go, but because of the level of discipline I had to apply in order to put into practice all the “life changing” focusing techniques, which I preach about.  Where we choose to center our minds after we catch ourselves diving straight into our deepest fears, is just that, our CHOICE.  I did manage to lure myself out of those dark spaces most of time, where every stranger was a potential threat and every wave could bring with it the riptide that would carry my 12-year old out to sea.  It wasn’t easy, but it was a testimony to the fact that we really do choose how we live our lives based on where we allow our imaginations to linger.

What drove me to finally agree to the trip came from moments spent in quiet and solitude. I would sit and ask, “Is this trip necessary for my son?”  The answer I received was always an immediate and indisputable “YES!!”  I could feel it penetrating my whole body with a sort of WHOOOSH of certainty and peace.

We usually think of our “Motherly Instinct” or “Motherly Intuition” as being a built in warning system that helps us swoop up the baby just in time or to take the long way home today rather than the freeway “just in case.” It’s often our personal, physiological hotline to the Big Guy or Gal who helps us keep our little chicks where they belong–in the nest where they are safe and warm.  But this new stage is teaching me a whole new realm of Motherly Intuition which I’m betting will help me through Alex’s adolescence, which in essence, is a gradual letting go of the sweaty little hand which once clenched  mine with fervor and insecurity.

Rather than maintain our antennas on full alert looking for dangers, we can allow our intuition to work for the positives as well.  We can ask “God,” our “higher selves,” “our guides,” our dead grandmothers, the purple elves–whomever it is that we tend to connect with in our deepest moments of silence–whether something is right for our kids.  “Right” doesn’t mean that they will never get hurt or have problems and challenges. But if it’s done in the highest interest of our children’s growing process, then don’t we need to honor that?  When we receive a “Yes,” as I did, then we have a space of knowing and faith to come back into when the unavoidable monkey talk starts up, reminding us of all that could go wrong.

So Alex returned sun-tanned, a little taller (at least he seemed it to me), and completely decided to be a world traveler someday.  And maybe he will be.  What role this trip will have in his life, I can never know, but I am sure it will have one.  We can’t know our children’s destinies and I believe that it’s wrong to try and define the subtle edges of their gifts.   Our role as mothers is to hold their hands as they discover that for themselves.

There will be more than enough people out there who will try to tell our children what they are and are not capable of.  Meanwhile, developing and trusting our motherly intuition is the greatest gift we can offer in a world so steeped in fear.  It was the true reason I was able to let go of Alex’s hand last week as he boarded the bus in the school’s still-dark parking lot at 5 am.  Not without tears of course, but with the surrender that only comes from the gentle grace of knowing.

Add a Comment
Back To Fearless Feisty Mama
  1. by Julie K. Aponte

    On July 31, 2012 at 11:37 am

    This is my Letting Go, story.

    I wrote the date on here yesterday morning and took a deep breathe but had nothing I wanted to share.

    I had a basically normal Julie the mom day yesterday.

    March is always a powerful and nostalgic month for me. I was born March back in ’73. It’s been a pretty decent life and I have very few complaints.

    Last night my son went out to a birthday party with my sister and her family. This was his first party without mom and he had such a great time. It was Olivia’s 5th birthday celebration and I’ve been wanting Max to hang out with Oli and her two brothers for a couple of years now, by a couple I literally mean two. I went to hug two dear ladies in my life, at the Brooklyn Museum and was home by 11:00 pm. Max has not stopped talking about how great the cake was or how awesome the party was. He said to his dad this morning, as they brushed, “I sang happy birthday to my friend and it was fun. I started to be a little bit shy but then I wasn’t shy anymore. I ate a lot of cake, it was really good!” What a conversation, what a moment. I feel so honored and blessed to be Maximillian’s mom and at the same time I’m like WHAT!? I’m Maximillian’s mom.

    Max is easily able to articulate his feelings. At the ripe old age of 34 months, yes MONTHS, he can clearly identify what he is feeling and what his responses are and share. It’s amazing to me. I know lots of it is coaching and I know that the most of it is that this is the person he was born to be. It was not easy for me to let go and send my baby boy to a party with my sister and not go with him. It was tricky for me and a bit emotional.

    I have been a stay at home mom now for a while and my attachment to my son is just as great as his attachment to me. We spend every moment of every day together and I thank the Lord that we can. I value the time and the opportunity and pray that my influence on him helps him to have the best life he can possibility have. Talking to a an amazing mother last night we both decided, we only do the best that we can, and like Maya Angelou says, “When you know better, you do better!” My mom was a stay at home mom for most of my life and I know she always did and still does, only the best that she can. I didn’t turn out that bad, with her coaching, her love and therapy, in my later years, I have been able to live a pretty fabulous life. I love, I laugh, I live. I have so much experience and yet know nothing and am still growing. I know these times will not return and the moments and the memories Max and I have created during this time will live in our souls always, in all of our lifetimes to come. I only pray that I am doing the right thing.

    Last night I doubted for a minute that I should send him off to a party and I go off to a Dance Party at the BK museum. I hesitated for a moment thinking, that would be bad, he’s too little, my sister won’t have fun, she will have to watch him. He may get upset about something, he’s going to miss me, he will play and run on the stairs and get hurt, geez, all the thoughts I had in that moment. I took a deep breathe and thought about how independent he is, how responsible and amazing my sister is, how he needs to grow and lots of times it will be without me physically there. I had all these thoughts and took another deep breathe and let him go. I sat for a moment once he was gone and I said to myself, “self, I know you want to put on your pj’s and curl up with your, The Dance of Anger, book by Dr. Harriet Lerner and just wait for your man to home so you can talk or not but you know you want to see Moni at the museum. Get yourself up and get dressed and go to the museum, it’s what you truly want to do even if you don’t want to do it alone.” My dear friend Tomika met me at the museum and I got to hug both Tomika and Moni. I’ve had them both on the brain and they are both such amazing women who inspire such greatness and strength. They embody this for me and I love their energy, from day one, for each of them, respectively. I went. I got dressed in my wanna be hipster gear and got in my car with all of 27 dollars. I panicked once I got to Brooklyn and realized I ONLY had 27 dollars on me. Guess what, parking was $4.00 and the Museum was FREE! The smiles and hugs were Priceless.

    I came home and Max was still out. His dad asked, “Where’s Max? Still at the party?” I said, “yes and he is having a great time and he will call me when he is on his way home.” WOW, what an evening of growth.

    Happy 4th.


  2. by Joseph Kassebaum

    On August 2, 2012 at 11:47 pm

    entry level sales jobs toledo ohio

  3. by What is Provacyl

    On October 24, 2012 at 7:54 am

    Do you have problems with spammers? I have many Blog Engine blog and I have some good anti-spam practices; please E-mail me if you are thinking about an exchange of practices.

  4. by Forly1927

    On October 25, 2012 at 1:52 pm

    hey there and thanks on your info – I have definitely picked up something new from right here. I did then again expertise some technical issues the usage of this web site, as I experienced to reload the website a lot of occasions previous to I could get it to load properly. I had been pondering in case your web host is OK? Now not that I am complaining, however slow loading instances occasions will often impact your placement in google and can injury your quality score if advertising and ***********|advertising|advertising|advertising and *********** with Adwords. Well I’m including this RSS to my e-mail and could look out for much more of your respective intriguing content. Ensure that you update this once more soon..

  5. by 2D Motion Designer

    On October 26, 2012 at 5:55 am

    whoah this weblog is magnificent i like reading your articles. Stay up the good work! You understand, a lot of individuals are hunting around for this info, you could aid them greatly.

  6. by achieve goals

    On November 1, 2012 at 1:14 pm

    Thanks for sharing excellent informations. Your web-site is so cool. I am impressed by the details that you’ve on this website. It reveals how nicely you perceive this subject. Bookmarked this website page, will come back for extra articles. You, my friend, ROCK! I found just the info I already searched everywhere and just couldn’t come across. What a perfect site.

  7. Definitely, what a great website and informative posts, I will bookmark your blog.Best Regards!

  8. by how

    On November 1, 2012 at 1:16 pm

    I¡¦m now not positive where you’re getting your information, however great topic. I needs to spend some time learning much more or working out more. Thank you for magnificent information I was on the lookout for this info for my mission.

  9. by col3negoriginal

    On November 1, 2012 at 1:17 pm

    Thank you for any other excellent article. The place else may anybody get that kind of info in such a perfect method of writing? I’ve a presentation subsequent week, and I’m at the search for such information.

  10. by Ps Vita Hack

    On November 1, 2012 at 1:18 pm

    you are actually a excellent webmaster. The website loading pace is incredible. It seems that you are doing any unique trick. Also, The contents are masterwork. you have performed a excellent process on this subject!

  11. by Homework help online

    On November 1, 2012 at 1:18 pm

    I simply wanted to thank you very much once again. I am not sure the things I might have done in the absence of the actual thoughts shared by you over such industry. This has been a real depressing matter in my position, however , coming across the very well-written manner you solved it forced me to weep for gladness. I’m just grateful for this work and then have high hopes you really know what a great job you are always doing training the rest using a blog. Most probably you have never met any of us.

  12. by surviving infidelity

    On November 1, 2012 at 1:46 pm

    Very interesting details you have observed , thanks for putting up. “Opportunities are seldom labeled.” by John H. Shield.

  13. by book

    On November 5, 2012 at 6:33 am

    I’m still learning from you, while I’m trying to achieve my goals. I absolutely enjoy reading everything that is posted on your blog.Keep the tips coming. I loved it!

  14. by my milton mortgage

    On November 5, 2012 at 6:36 am

    I am not certain the place you are getting your info, however great topic. I needs to spend a while learning much more or understanding more. Thanks for wonderful info I was in search of this info for my mission.

  15. by paella recipes

    On November 5, 2012 at 7:12 am

    I delight in, result in I discovered just what I was looking for. You’ve ended my 4 day long hunt! God Bless you man. Have a nice day. Bye

  16. by property

    On November 5, 2012 at 7:39 am

    I have fun with, lead to I discovered exactly what I was looking for. You’ve ended my 4 day lengthy hunt! God Bless you man. Have a great day. Bye

  17. by generic anchor text is fine

    On November 6, 2012 at 11:26 am

    Thanks for sharing superb informations. Your web-site is very cool. I’m impressed by the details that you have on this blog. It reveals how nicely you understand this subject. Bookmarked this website page, will come back for more articles. You, my pal, ROCK! I found just the info I already searched all over the place and just couldn’t come across. What an ideal site.

  18. by used rav 4

    On November 6, 2012 at 11:28 am

    Hello, Neat post. There’s an issue along with your web site in internet explorer, may test this¡K IE still is the market leader and a huge component of people will omit your magnificent writing due to this problem.

  19. by cleveland computer recycling

    On November 6, 2012 at 11:34 am

    I do believe all the concepts you’ve offered in your post. They’re very convincing and will definitely work. Still, the posts are too brief for beginners. May just you please prolong them a little from subsequent time? Thanks for the post.

  20. by the woodlands

    On November 6, 2012 at 11:59 am

    You can certainly see your expertise within the paintings you write. The sector hopes for more passionate writers such as you who aren’t afraid to mention how they believe. At all times follow your heart.

  21. by Internet Marketing

    On November 7, 2012 at 10:34 am

    Thanks for the sensible critique. Me and my neighbor were just preparing to do a little research about this. We got a grab a book from our area library but I think I learned more from this post. I am very glad to see such fantastic information being shared freely out there.

  22. by iphone 5 unlock

    On November 7, 2012 at 10:35 am

    I think other web-site proprietors should take this web site as an model, very clean and fantastic user friendly style and design, let alone the content. You’re an expert in this topic!

  23. by Solavei

    On November 7, 2012 at 10:37 am

    Generally I don’t read article on blogs, but I wish to say that this write-up very pressured me to try and do it! Your writing style has been surprised me. Thank you, quite nice post.

  24. by Chemical free body wrap

    On November 7, 2012 at 10:37 am

    I’ve been browsing online more than three hours as of late, yet I never discovered any interesting article like yours. It is lovely worth sufficient for me. Personally, if all web owners and bloggers made good content material as you probably did, the internet can be much more helpful than ever before.

  25. by female assassin

    On November 7, 2012 at 10:43 am

    Excellent post. I was checking continuously this blog and I am impressed! Extremely useful information specifically the last part :) I care for such information much. I was looking for this certain information for a long time. Thank you and best of luck.

  26. by Elite Studio

    On November 8, 2012 at 7:22 am

    Thank you, I’ve recently been searching for info about this subject for a long time and yours is the greatest I have found out so far. However, what concerning the bottom line? Are you sure about the source?

  27. by visit this site

    On November 8, 2012 at 7:22 am

    Thank you, I have just been looking for info approximately this topic for ages and yours is the greatest I’ve came upon till now. However, what in regards to the conclusion? Are you positive in regards to the source?

  28. by Done For You Website

    On November 8, 2012 at 7:27 am

    Hiya, I am really glad I’ve found this info. Nowadays bloggers publish only about gossips and internet and this is actually frustrating. A good website with exciting content, that is what I need. Thanks for keeping this web site, I will be visiting it. Do you do newsletters? Can’t find it.

  29. by

    On November 9, 2012 at 8:10 am

    What i don’t realize is if truth be told how you are not actually much more smartly-appreciated than you may be now. You are so intelligent. You realize therefore considerably in the case of this subject, produced me for my part believe it from numerous various angles. Its like women and men are not interested unless it¡¦s something to do with Woman gaga! Your personal stuffs outstanding. Always handle it up!

  30. by Web Design Hamilton New Zealand

    On November 9, 2012 at 8:13 am

    I and my friends appeared to be looking at the great strategies from your site and all of a sudden I had a horrible feeling I had not thanked the website owner for those tips. The men are actually for this reason excited to read through all of them and have now sincerely been taking pleasure in these things. I appreciate you for turning out to be really helpful and for making a decision on this kind of terrific areas most people are really desirous to learn about. My sincere regret for not expressing gratitude to earlier.

  31. by cyber monday tv sales 2012

    On November 9, 2012 at 9:31 am

    you are actually a good webmaster. The site loading pace is incredible. It kind of feels that you’re doing any unique trick. Also, The contents are masterpiece. you have done a magnificent task on this topic!

  32. by lands end to john o'groats cycle

    On November 13, 2012 at 7:43 am

    Rattling nice pattern and excellent subject material , nothing at all else we need : D.

  33. by easy reader

    On November 15, 2012 at 9:17 am

    I think other web-site proprietors should take this web site as an model, very clean and great user genial style and design, let alone the content. You are an expert in this topic!

  34. by BMW Salt Lake City Utah

    On November 15, 2012 at 9:19 am

    Good day very nice website!! Man .. Beautiful .. Wonderful .. I will bookmark your blog and take the feeds also…I am happy to find numerous helpful information right here within the post, we want work out more techniques on this regard, thanks for sharing.

  35. by Hair Salon

    On November 15, 2012 at 9:20 am

    I believe this internet site holds some really excellent information for everyone. “Dealing with network executives is like being nibbled to death by ducks.” by Eric Sevareid.

  36. by webdesign

    On November 21, 2012 at 2:25 am

    I¡¦ve read a few good stuff here. Definitely worth bookmarking for revisiting. I wonder how so much attempt you put to make this kind of fantastic informative site.

  37. by créer site web gratuitement ligne

    On November 24, 2012 at 8:57 pm

    My husband and i ended up being really peaceful that Peter managed to finish off his investigations via the precious recommendations he obtained through the web page. It’s not at all simplistic to simply find yourself giving away tips and hints that many many people have been selling. And now we keep in mind we have the writer to be grateful to for that. The specific explanations you made, the easy web site menu, the friendships you give support to instill – it’s many sensational, and it’s leading our son in addition to our family reckon that that subject is enjoyable, and that is unbelievably indispensable. Thanks for everything!

  38. by come creare un sito web gratis per sempre yahoo

    On November 25, 2012 at 9:32 am

    What i don’t understood is in truth how you’re not actually a lot more neatly-favored than you may be now. You are very intelligent. You know therefore significantly in the case of this subject, produced me for my part consider it from numerous varied angles. Its like men and women don’t seem to be fascinated unless it¡¦s something to accomplish with Lady gaga! Your own stuffs nice. At all times care for it up!

  39. by Charisse Neils

    On December 6, 2012 at 10:28 am

    I have to voice my respect for your kind-heartedness giving support to those individuals that need help with this particular topic. Your personal commitment to getting the message along was amazingly insightful and has regularly permitted somebody much like me to arrive at their targets. The invaluable hints and tips entails this much to me and a whole lot more to my office colleagues. Warm regards; from each one of us.

  40. by coupons

    On December 27, 2012 at 5:54 pm

    I’d like to find out more? I’d like to find out some additional information.|

  41. by Gerardo Moretz

    On December 31, 2012 at 12:04 am

    Hi! I just would like to give you a big thumbs up for the great info you’ve got here on this post. I am returning to your blog for more soon.

  42. by

    On January 6, 2013 at 5:54 pm

    I have not checked in here for some time because I thought it was getting boring, but the last handful of posts are really great quality so I guess I’ll add you back to my daily bloglist. You deserve it my friend. :)

  43. by erectile dysfunction

    On March 22, 2013 at 11:17 pm

    Thanks for your tips on this blog. 1 thing I would want to say is the fact purchasing electronic products items on the Internet is not something new. The truth is, in the past 10 years alone, the market for online electronic products has grown drastically. Today, you can find practically almost any electronic unit and product on the Internet, ranging from cameras and also camcorders to computer pieces and gaming consoles.

  44. by Twanda Frier

    On April 9, 2013 at 10:45 pm

    I’ll gear this review to 2 types of people: current Zune owners who are considering an upgrade, and people trying to decide between a Zune and an iPod. (There are other players worth considering out there, like the Sony Walkman X, but I hope this gives you enough info to make an informed decision of the Zune vs players other than the iPod line as well.)

  45. by STRONA

    On May 6, 2013 at 8:29 am

    That is the correct weblog for anybody who desires to seek out out about this topic. You notice so much its nearly exhausting to argue with you (not that I truly would need…HaHa). You positively put a brand new spin on a topic thats been written about for years. Great stuff, simply nice!