Monday, June 14, 2010 we go...

The first step to "letting go" a doozy!

Today, the Prince is traveling by himself for the first time (since 9/11) via airplane. He's going to a camp for expatriate kids and is very excited. But first he has to fly across the country and then catch a connecting flight, which includes picking up his luggage, paying a fee to get a new ticket (because we had a few issues regarding visas last week...he didn't get to leave yesterday), rechecking his luggage and finding his location all while dealing with a foreign language.

It was a big decision to allow him to go...without us. We still see him as a kid, but he is quickly turning into a young man. As his parents, of course our instinct is to hover. We fight that instinct in many ways and for many reasons.

First, it's not healthy. Kids make mistakes. We all do. I would rather he make mistakes while under my care (i.e. in my house) where we can deal with them and learn from them than when he is all alone in the big world out there. Chances are the mistakes he'll make now will not "ruin his life", whereas the ones he'll make once he's on his own (and considered and adult) very well could. Are you following me?

Second, he is about to go to boarding school. Momma is NOT ready for that. He isn't either in many ways. But. If he learns some of the needed lessons now while we're still dealing with high school it will be easier for us to help him than if he's off at college in the states. He needs to go. He's ready for the next level.

Third, he has had us to do everything for him and now he must step up to the plate and do much of it for himself (with our guidance, of course). Today he's equipped with his flight information, his passport, money, a working cell phone, emergency phone numbers of people in that city that we have met on this journey, and best of all...a big God.

His father really wants to call and check on him...I have encouraged him not to. This is the Prince's chance to prove himself. He knows what to do...let him do it. He knows what to do in case of emergency or a missed flight or even issues transferring. He has enough language to do it AND there are English speakers everywhere at that particular airport. Once he makes his connecting flight there is someone to meet him when he lands.

Now. Having said that...let me tell you that this is stretching Mom as well. The Prince is a really smart cookie but can be scatter brained at times. Trusting that he can and WILL do this are harder than they seem. But we need to. He needs to know we believe in him.

When I was a teacher, I saw parents HOVERING over their kids to rescue them from any and all consequences. We called them Helicopter parents. It's not healthy for kids to not deal with consequences and learn from their mistakes. It's just SO DIFFICULT as a parent to let them.

Anyway, all that to say, that this is the first step. With boarding school on the horizon, the Prince will be traveling by himself or with a small group alot. This is a good time to practice what we've always been there to do for/with him. We've tried our best to prepare him...we'll see how he does. I know he's capable. It makes me think of that Mark Harris song...

"It's only for a moment you are mine to hold
The plans that heaven has for you will all too soon unfold.
So many different prayers I'll pray for all that you might do
but most of all I'll want to know that you're walkin' in the truth.
And if I never told you
I want you to know...
As I watch you grow..

I pray that God would fill your heart with dreams
And that faith gives you the courage to dare do great things
I'm here for you whatever this life brings
So let my love give you roots
And help you find your wings

May passion be the wind that leads you through your days
and may conviction keep you strong and guide you on your way
May there be many moments that make your life so sweet,
Oh, but more than memories...

I pray that God would fill your heart with dreams
And that faith gives you the courage to dare to do great things
I'm here for you whatever this life brings
So let my love give you roots
And help you find your wings

It's not living if you don't reach for the sky
I'll have tears as you take off
But I'll cheer as you fly!

My boy is taking off and it makes me sad and so proud at the same time. Fly Prince. Soar! Your mom loves you. Your Dad, too, and we believe in you.

Disclaimer...I almost didn't post this because I don't want family members to stress...but as his mom...about to let him go...I've got to deal with some of these emotions floating around inside me or when it's time...I'll blubber like a baby...which I might do anyway! LOL.


PandaMom said...

OK--all choked over here. I'm watching you for future reference on how I'll act and do things! ; ) Will be lifting you up just as you do for me, sister. I love you!!

Anonymous said...

My word. Mr.J says good for him!
Friend I'll be joining you in asking Dad to keep him in His hand. I will pray believing Dad will return him home safely. Love all of you and think about you often.

Ashley said...

Praying big time - for him and his parents! Yall are loved.

The Allens said...

Good for you, Sweet Friend! I don't actually know how you're doing it except by a faith in a God who loves him more than you do. I totally agree with your thoughts. If we could convince more parents to give their children room to "grow" in their own home, I know Jared & I feel we would have more success with the "final product" in our own field. I know you're growing a capable, godly young man. Can't wait to hear how it went!

GMudda said...

You are so right, it's hard to let them go, though you've trained and taught them, they must discover for themselves what's out there. But, all the while, realizing that God is "bigger than any mountain" and He's in CONTROL and always will be. We love all of you and pray for the peace of God for you and your traveling MAN! Love all of you, GMudda and Pappaw

Mom said...

Pondering....I was only two years older than you are now when you told me you were marrying that guy who was a complete stranger to me. That's hard to fit inside my brain.

I have been thinking of you and missing you so much. Didn't know you were standing at the edge of time and staring into the future. When your kids get grown everything changes forever. Love you!

Sebrina said...

Boy did you say a mouth full. My young man, now 18, is separating himself from me in many ways. I've taught him to do his laundry and he has cooked for himself from time to time. He often goes out without filling me in on the details of his whereabouts and activities. I can only remind him of consequences if he makes poor decisions. So far things have worked out well. He is making decisions about College or Serving his country. I will keep the Prince in my heart along with my son. Love you guys.

Colorado Dreamin' said...

I admire how you are able to do what you are doing. We love you and know that you have covered everything in love.

My two young ones are at Preteen camp with MRBC this week. They come home tomorrow. Haven't talked to them and miss them. It is much different that what you are going through but I still feel the same things.

Love ya!