Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Struggling to let go

Every day is a struggle.  Especially being a single mom with a teenage boy.  I have always tried not to smother him or turn him into a “momma’s boy.”  Ever since he was little I have encouraged him to be independent and strong.

Several years ago I divorced, and so began for my son, at the time age 12, the every other week plane trips to visit his dad in San Antonio.  I was not surprised when I took him to the airport for the first time and I was going over the list; gate number, flight number, time…then he said it: "Just drop me at the curb, I can do this myself.”

I hesitated, but I did it.  He had his phone, and Love Field is not that big. He called me when he got through security, when he found the gate, when he was going to board and when he landed.  All safe and sound.   Now he’s a pro and he’s usually on the same flight so he knows the crew.  He’s always excited to tell me about who he sat to on the plane or who he met.

This year we start the next chapter of our life, high school. Watching him grow up is wonderful, amazing and scary. Every day I struggle with the want to protect and baby my baby, with the knowledge that he can do this himself.  I know that I have taught him right from wrong and that he will have to deal with the consequences of any decision that he makes. I have to trust that he will make the right decisions.

Time has gone by so fast. Just yesterday he was starting kindergarten. Now he’s playing high school football and will soon be learning to drive. I know that this year will be full of firsts, but I have to keep reminding myself that he can do this himself.

Michelle Clark is the nursing supervisor for the postpartum unit at Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital Plano and single Mom of one.

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