July 25, 2016
“Accept what is, let go of what was, and have faith in what will be.” ~Sonia Ricotti
Sometimes in life, we have to allow it to be as it is. “In order to grow, you must be able to let go.” As I watched my daughter take on an adventure to Ireland this past month, with the hopes that she would surpass any and all of her dreams and desires, I was filled with excitement for her. The possibilities that lie ahead, the people and experiences she could have would be an incredible time in her life.
As a parent, you only want the best for your children and you try by giving them the tools and guidance to help them in life and their own journey. We are always trying to make sure they are safe and happy, that nothing will hurt them or disappointment them. When we parents think about our children being independent, we may picture them as all grown up in a happy life, with us hoping that they will find a good job, be part of a community, and maybe even get married. When looking at this future picture, it may seem like “independence” is an event that happens down the road. The reality is that we have already been promoting their independence from a very early age without realizing that we have started the process of letting them go.
Unfortunately, Ireland seemed to bring a great deal of distance and separation anxiety for her. Her excitement changed to fear and loneliness. As her mother, I tried to help her with guidance and reassurance that this was an experience of a lifetime and things will work out, all the while feeling her sadness. I found that I was trying to convenience her to stay and try to work through it. What I didn’t realize was that each day she would try to make it work, with no luck, just made her feel even more lonely and separated. Sometimes, what we as parents, think will be the best for them, isn’t at all. We can’t make someone have love in their heart when it’s not there. I had to let go any hope that this was where she wanted to be. When I received her note, I knew it was time to come home. As a parent, there is nothing worse than knowing your child is unhappy, far away and you can’t run to her. Many may suggest, “let her tough it out” but that has never been my belief. When your child needs you at any age, we must be there for them. That was our contract in life, to them.
“I always knew that this trip was not going to be a cakewalk. I knew I would be homesick and lonely, that there would be a lot to deal with, that I would have to set up a life all on my own. I expected negative emotions, confusion, and a complicated start. I want to stop agonizing about staying or leaving. I want to make a decision instead of how awful I feel. There are a lot of things I will miss about this amazing country, and I won’t get to do a lot of what I had planned. I learned a lot, though, and discovered a deep love for Ireland. I know that I will be back. This is not my last hurrah on the Emerald Isle. I still plan on seeing the world. I still want to see everything there is to see. But thanks to this trip, I am a little wiser about how I want to do that. It’s okay to make things a bit easier on yourself. You don’t always need to do things the absolute hardest way possible, just to make sure that you’re getting a “full experience.” Doing something because it feels right, or because it will make you happy, isn’t a sign of weakness.”
These are the times in life that you have to stop, let go and allow for their own growth, on their own terms. I am very proud of her for taking this adventure and also, realizing it wasn’t for her just yet.
“Respect yourself enough to walk away from anything that no longer serves you, grows you, or makes you happy.”
Welcome Home Beautiful!
Peace of I