The day I left the hospital with my firstborn, in disbelief that they were trusting this little life completely to my care, I asked myself, “Am I ready for this?” The first night away from the baby, “Am I ready for this?” First day of preschool, “Am I ready for this?” First day of kindergarten, “Am I ready for this?” First sleepover at a friend’s, “Am I REALLY ready for this?” I’m going on my twelfth year of being a mom and I still regularly ask myself the question, “Am I ready for this?”
This is even truer as of recent. My oldest will be entering middle school this fall. We just had her first school dance and I can already I see a slew of, “Is this actually happening?” moments making their way down the pipe. The thought of dates, driving and unsupervised outings with friends has me feeling more than a little nervous. It’s all right around the corner and I know I have to handle each of these moments with grace if I am going to give my daughter what she needs to be successful.
As I look at my daughter, I love everything about her eleven-year-old self. Her heart. Her sense of humor. Her curiosity. Her smile. Her genuine caring spirit. While I want to bottle her up and keep her just as she is for a few more years -at least- I know that she is more than ready for the next step in her journey.
She is ready for middle school and the adventures of sixth grade. She is ready to take on more responsibility and independence. I’m the one who doesn’t want to loosen the reins and trust that her journey is set up to give her the experiences she needs as she is ready for them.
I cried the first day I dropped her off at preschool and the first time she boarded the kindergarten bus. I have a feeling it won’t be any different for the first day of middle school, high school and especially college.
What I realize now, however, is that I am not crying for my daughter, I am crying for me. I am so proud of her and her accomplishments, but that’s not why I cry. I cry for the lack of control I have over the situation. I cry because I’m being forced to let go and trust that everything I have taught and instilled in my daughter thus far will sustain her.
Quite frankly, that scares the shit out of me!
And then I cry more…in fear of something going wrong and finding out that I didn’t do enough to prepare her. I get caught up in my fears and miss the full beauty of the moment that is my child growing into one frickin’ awesome human being.
Thinking back, was I really ready for any of the challenges that motherhood set at my feet?
For most of them, I don’t think that I was. It didn’t matter though, because my children were ready. It was their readiness that forced me to show up. I was forced to stretch and grow and become exactly what they needed. So they could be ready for their next step, before I ever was.
I’m not sure that I’ll be ready for all of the milestones and special moments to come, but my kids will be….and I’ll be there supporting them each step of the way.
With Love and Sexiness,