It's not easy for me to do, this "letting go" business. I am overprotective of my children. I'll admit it. I don't like the idea of them growing up and not being my little babies, under my wing. And I certainly don't like the idea of something bad happening to them.
But I do have to learn to let them go. And I am working on it lately.
For starters, I am letting my two school-aged kids walk four houses down to the bus stop by themselves every morning. That was really hard, but Jack (my 5yo) kept insisting he didn't want me to come, he could go by himself, he was a big boy. No way I'd let him go if it wasn't for his older sister, and if she ever has to stay home sick, I'll definitely walk him down. Every single morning I have to force myself not to run after them, not to call the school and make sure they got there okay, not pace the floors until Jack returns from school safely. But I do it.
For another, I have been letting Chloë, who will be 7yo on Saturday, cross the street by herself. I know!! She is SEVEN, for Pete's sake! But ours is a busy road, and she's a tiny girl. Our mailbox is across the street, and she has been taking my keys, crossing the street and getting the mail every day for the past few weeks. She loves this "chore," and gets irritated on Sundays and holidays when it can't be done. I, on the other hand, spend every second fretting around the peephole, waiting for her to make it safely back inside.
Also, I've been letting her play outside by herself, without me. The other two, I don't trust not to go running right into the street, but I do trust her to stay and play exactly where I tell her. And I watch out the front window. My neighbor actually came over and asked me whether I really thought that was safe, and I had to assure him I'd thought long and hard about it before deciding it was okay. We still have frequent talks about Stranger Danger, though.
Anyway, it's difficult, it really is, but these small steps repeated over and over are starting to ease the process for me. What ways have you "let go" when all you really wanted to do was hold on for dear life?
Thanks for stopping by!