We all know the song, “Let it go”. The frozen story about a future queen that had to hide who she was until she had, had enough and decided to just let go of all fake facades that she put into place in order to “protect her and those around her.” I would go as far as to say it started a movement for all people around the world to begin showing their true selves. Their true desires, their true wants. However there is a part of the story that is hugely overlooked. It was just a moment in the story, but it set the whole stage for what was to come. It was the catalyst to the creation of the story. It was only about a minute or two. The moment where the mother and father decided to leave the home in search for answers. The loving, doting, concerned parents went searching for something better, not knowing what would happen, not knowing what they would find, they were brave enough to trust their children and sailed away. Had this not occurred there would be no Frozen story at all.
My girls were 6 months, 5 years and 8 years old at the time when Frozen came out. I was the mother that did it all because my husband worked 4 hours away and at the time, his schedule to make things work was insane. From September to Christmas he had about 7 days off. Post pardom brain me, sleepless nights with an infant, the driving to and from school 4 times in a day because ones in kindergarten doing half days and the other is full time and no bussing was providing…. Needing to wake a a sleeping baby multiple times in order to do the pick ups, plus the one extra curricular activity the kids were in, plus all the specialists and doctor appointments as that is when allergies began changing. PLUS trying to maintain a marriage that was already stressed from long distance and lack of time. I felt alone. I felt stretched beyond my means, I felt angry, frustrated and yet I wouldn’t have it any other way. I adored my kids, I adored what we were creating. Speaking as a woman who has had three pregnancies, three babies I can say we begin learning to let go from the moment we get that positive result.
Whether it is the at home pregnancy test or the blood test done to confirm we let go. We learn what each pregnancy needs and we adapt. We avoid certain foods, or smells. We let go of late nights in order to get extra sleep that our body needs while we grow another persons kidney’s, arms, legs, head; a whole digestive system. We let go of “feeling good” when we choose to move through our morning sickness, night sickness or all day sickness. We let go of how our “brains used to work” and adapt to how they work now. [women actually loose grey matter while pregnant and after pregnancy]. We let go of how our body used to be. We adjust to the widening hips, the swollen legs, the growing belly that is no long what we are used to…. I could go on and on about what we need to let go of and adjust to in pregnancy but that would take this whole blog. We let go and move with the process.
Women in labour and delivery again are given a lesson in letting go. We learn that fear and worry stop progression, making things more difficult. We learn to let go when we want to tense. We learn to let go and let our bodies do what it is designed to do in order to bring forth life. We have to surrender to the letting go, to give ourselves to the process and not try and control it. Its during this time we learn just how strong and powerful we are while also discovering a new layer of our feminine side. [I never felt more powerful, more euphoric, and even more feminine after I gave birth to my 2nd and 3rd babies.]. The lessons of letting go and becoming something different were incredible powerful during those times.
Jumping to the toddler years, we again have have to experience and choose letting go. Their first bites of whole foods, their first steps, their first falls… All this begins for preparing us for what is coming. We have practice in fading away from them as we lay them down as not to wake them and slowly backing away. We practice fading away when we are teaching them to play and entertain themselves. Day home/day care/pre school/kindergarten…. It all teaches us to let go and allow them to grow. Most of the time tears are on both sides, but we are teaching them as much as we are learning to let go. We teach them we will always come back. We in return learn that they are in fact ok without us for certain times during the day. We learn to let go more.
Insert the preteen years. Now I only have girls so I do not know what it is like for boys, but being a mom I can tell you with confidence that the preteens…. Hold on to your hats cause they are a force. I swear they go through their own set of hormones and it is like Jeykle and Hyde. Here we really learn what battles we need to win and what battles we can let go of. From talking respectfully, to following through with tasks such as homework, household responsibilities, to teaching how to be a good friend and when to stand strong in their boundaries. All while letting go to see what they can do, to start discovering themselves and what is important to them in life. These years are when their spiritual life becomes their own and no longer just what “parents teach”. It becomes personal to them and we need to learn to let go so they can grow into their spiritual selves. We are becoming experts in letting go.
I remember 17.5 years ago I was reading a book called “sacred parenting”. You know how it goes first pregnancy you read ALL the books, but this one… this one has ALWAYS been remembered by me and I have used its knowledge as a corner stone to how I wanted to be as a parent. Now, I am a woman of faith and it is a strong faith although I do not talk about it a lot. One paragraph in this book talked about how we do our children a disservice if we try and remove all obstacles, all trials for our children. That it is important to allow them to fail as well as succeed. That it is important even for them to experience hurts emotionally, physically and spiritually in order for them to grow into who they are designed to be. The sentence that made this truth stick to me. “If god had prevented Jesus’s suffering, if he had prevented his persecution, starting from when his parents had to run and hide him as a toddler so Harrod could not kill him, to when Jesus was sacrificed on the cross….. Then there would be no story of Jesus and there would be no Christ influence over the world like there is now.” That struck me. I knew in those moments I would roar like a lioness if needed, but I would also fade away like a gaurdian angel watching in the background. I knew I would not be a “helicopter parent”. Now whether you are a christian or not, to me that is not the point. The point of that paragraph was that Christs greatest influence in the world was love. Love your neighbour as you love yourself. Keep these two commandments he said. The lesson was that God loved the world so much that he was willing to allow his son to endure horrific torture and even death so that the world could be changed forever. We as parents have to be willing to let go because we love them so much in order for our children to become who they were meant to be, in order so they can impact the world.
Three weeks ago, my 17.5 year old made the decision to search for work outside of “close to home”. Graduated and desperately trying to find employment and no one hiring because of “her age” they said. She decided to take a job 3.5 hours away…. Excitement flooded me and yet fear. She didn’t have her license. She didn’t have a vehicle. She's only 17. What if something goes wrong? SOOOO much fear on my end, but again a chapter from “Sacred parenting” reminded me that a parent must “decrease” in order for their children to increase. Now is her time to grow, now is her time to push herself to become who she is destined to be. Now is the time for her to make mistakes, to fail, to succeed and to win. If I stand in her way, if I say “no”. If I do not help her to be successful in her choices, I am making her small. I am telling her she is not capable. I am telling her I do not believe in her. I am keeping myself huge in her eyes and her smaller than me. My wants and desires for her now need to become secondary. I let go. I help her get a vehicle, I take her to her drivers test and I scream with excitement when she passes the very day we are set to leave to her new home… Her new job. I celebrate with her and as my middle one says “save your tears for the pillow lol”.
In coaching I often say to clients that are dealing with grief and life changing diagnosis “what do you need to let go of in order to be successful/ in order to move you to your goals/in order to get what you want?” Parents are already experts with this…. They just do not realize it yet. They have not connected the dots in how many times they have subconsciously made this choice. It is my job to bring it into their awareness. Into their consciousness. My beautiful 17 year old Summer, cried the first night and said “mom I can not do this…. What if I don’t get enough hours, what if I hate it here, what if I fail?” I could have said “You probably will fail, you can come home any time, its ok if you hate it…”. I could have fed into that dependance she has on me…. Instead I chose to let go. “Summer, you are more capable than you know. Remember that email you got guaranteeing you certain hours? They didn’t bring you here for you to sit in your room waiting to work. They brought you here to work. You are strong and resilient. You moved through a sever trauma when you lost your sister and almost me, yet look at you now! You have this strength, you know what struggle and trials are, use that as your compass to when you have a hard/bad day. You’ll find that your bad days… are survivable and not that bad in a few days. “ As I held her face in my hands and I kissed her forehead I said “Baby girl, I have been practicing letting you go since you started to walk, since I took you to your day home, since I started taking you to school…. I have become an expert at letting you go, but now the roles are reversed…. You have to let me go. You have to let me drive away. You know I will always come for you if you need me to. You know you can always come home, but you begin, when you let go.”
Now believe it or not I said that all without crying. I said that through confidence and pride that I have in her. I said that through love and belief in her capabilities. I learned to let go so that I could teach her how to start letting go because one day, she will be the one letting go, and one day… She will have to have the confidence and the strength to know who she is when she has to let me go from this earth. I do not want her lost and not knowing who she is when I am gone. Our children were never meant to stay with us. We are always meant to have them for but a moment. That lesson became clear as day when Marley died in the collision. I learned as hard as it was over the last 4 years since the collision that as much as my girls need me to let go, I need to be confident in letting me go so I can be who I am destined to be. So my identity is my own and not enshrined in being their mother. This is the biggest lesson that all my clients have and often ask me when in their own grief of their life. “Who are they… they do not know who they are”. Only when we let go of all our titles, that we “think” we are. Strip it all away and who are you? What do you have to let go of in order to start discovering that and claim all the blessings, opportunities and love that you are destined to have?
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