Dear Children: The Cut

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The hardest thing about being a parent (and there are many hard aspects to it, despite what you may think) is learning when to let go. Learning when to allow you to have your freedom. For eighteen years you are our responsibility and then one day, you just aren’t. One day you are your own responsibilty. If I never give you any freedom now, how will you know how to use it when it is finally all yours? Every bit of it.

How much space is too much?

How much space is too little?

If I let you go will you float away like a balloon and never return?

I’m having a hard time of it.

It would be an entirely easier decision if there were not crazy contraptions in the sky. Designed to steer you off course. There are balloon thiefs. And, worse, balloon poppers. There are balloon gangs. And, God forbid, balloon addicts addicted to getting high.

Life.

It is so so so so so so fragile.

And you are not of the age that you can understand that yet.

Last month, I let you go to your very first concert.

Without me.

I drove away and left you. A part of me felt empty. Disoriented. The mother beast in me was fighting with the fact that I had just left you. By yourself. Okay, you had two friends with you, but there was not an adult. It was such a tough decision. Did I make the right choice? Even dropping you off at the mall with your friends is hard.

You know I will not be giving you your online freedom until you reach eighteen. It is one thing to physically drop you off at a location with your friends where there might be predators. It is another thing entirely to let you navigate, by yourself, the entire dirty world of the internet where I know there are predators.

It is a scary world when the virtual one becomes more dangerous than the physical one.

God forbid those two should ever collide.

I recognize I am somewhat sidetracking, but it all has to do with the same thing. The ever so hard choices we parents have to make. The scary consequences we will have to face if we allow you to make the wrong ones.

And we will.

And I will.

And you will.

And I need to tighten this darn string. Because this letting go thing is killing me. And I have just discovered that the string of your balloon is tied directly to my heart. This is rather inconvenient timing. It is going to hurt to cut that string. It hurts when you pull on it. When you attempt to break free before the string has been allowed to fray. To naturally make the cut on its own.

I feel as though time is a pair of ruthless scissors.

The choices more important than helium or air.

I am the clown that cannot laugh. I cannot mold my balloon fast enough for the circus of life that awaits to take my creation away.

Life is not fair.

Nor a fair.

But I am preparing you for it nonetheless.

Those scissors are looming closer. They are so sharp. So cutting. So very dreadful.

It makes sense that their cut would hurt.

I just never thought it would hurt this much.

16 thoughts on “Dear Children: The Cut

    • Thank you Sarah! You are so lucky to have a ways to go. They are so precious. If I could go back and relive it all over again, I would in a heartbeat. : )

      Have a beautiful day with your sweet babies!

      Jenni

  1. Awwwww. As i read this and reflected, i started to cry a few happy, nostalgia, sad tears. All good thought. A good writer brings up those emotions.

    I don’t have children, but really can relate to you comments and thoughts and imagine how hard it must have been for my Mom to loosen or cut the strings/cord. My going away to college must have been excruciating for her, as there only 2 in my little family unit: me and Mom. But while I was very excited to free the nest and the strings, I realized that I realized at the same time there was no safer place than home and my Mom had prepared me emotionally for this time.

    • Thank you Bronzi. That is so nice that you realized what your mom was going through and that you appreciated her so much. I want a relationship like that with my daughter when she leaves for college. It is definitely hard to let go!

      Thank you for commenting. And for sharing your sweet story.

      Have a delightful Tuesday!

      Jenni

  2. Ahh. I don’t want to think about these things yet!! I have, and I will, and your post was beautiful…but it is painful to think about. I feel like I have more conflicting feelings now, having a little girl and having to help her navigate in this world. Parenting is such a delicate balancing act.

    • Thank you Alicia. It is hard. And the time just flies by so quickly. Especially once they hit junior high. It is almost like time quadruples its speed. I just need it to slow down! Enjoy your sweet little ones!

      Have a lovely Tuesday!

      Jenni

  3. Your “Dear Children” letters always go straight to my heart. It’s like you are peeking into my own heart and writing what you see.

    • Thank you Debbie. I am glad you like them. I enjoy writing them. Even though they make me sad, it is healing to write down what I am feeling. I hope it gets easier for both of us!

      Have a peaceful happy week!

      Jenni

  4. so heartfelt. it’s so tough! have you read “Love You Forever”??? where the mamma drives to her son’s house at night when he moves out and uses a ladder to get to his room, then rocks him to sleep and sings her lullaby? ugh! makes me cry!!! it’s what we are supposed to do, prepare them to fly then let them go, but it’s oh-so-difficult!

    • Thank you Melodee. Oh ma, you are definitely being the ultimate mom this year with your baby girl going to college. I will watch you for advice.

      I have read that book. I used to make my kids cry when they were little, because I would sing the whole book. That would be me crawling through that window! ; )

      It breaks my heart.

      I hope your week is happy.

      Jenni

  5. My daughter is leaving Aug 5th. She turns 18 July 24, and she has joined the Army. We are very close, and she will be taking my heart with her. Our time together has gone by so quickly. Just yesterday she was a little girl.

    • Oh man. I have to tell you, I read this right before I went to sleep last night. I could not sleep for an hour thinking about it. And I was so sad for you. And excited for your daughter. I am sure she is happy to be starting her life, but I know how hard this must be for you. I hope it is a smooth transition. Please let me know how it goes. Feel free to email me if you want to talk. My time is coming soon, too.

      Have a beautiful weekend!

      Jenni

    • Oh my gosh! How did it go? Is this going to be a regular thing? How far is school from your house? This is something we will be going through in a year and a half. I do not know if my heart could handle it! I hope it all went beautifully!

      Have a calm and cheerful rest of the week!

      Jenni

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