Thursday, July 8, 2010
My chicks are exploring outside the nest.
Little Mother went to visit her aunt, uncle and cousins in Wellsville for a few days. She came back and hid from me for about a half an hour. When we talked about it this evening, she discovered that she felt that her "great visit" had changed her, that she was different and a different Little Mother didn't know how to greet her Mama. Tomorrow, Lesa, a good friend of mine, is taking her with her grown children boating. She will have another different kind of experience than she is used to. She will stretch, beat those wings a bit more, come to understand herself a bit more and have a blast.
Next week Ladybug leaves for girl's camp.... 5 days. Hikes, fun leaders, teamwork, girl's talk, testimony meeting. She doesn't know it yet, but her world is about to change. She will come back a different little Ladybug.
This exploration is bittersweet. I find myself reluctant to let them go. I selfishly want to be there for each new experience, when they discover new ways of doing things, when they discover depths in themselves, when they experience the first stirrings of testimony. I don't want to miss a moment. I'm their Mom for crying out loud. But I know that my continual presence can be a detriment to their growth.
I find myself in conflict with me. We've had a good talking to, explored our feelings, and I think I understand myself a bit better.
Growth comes from new experiences, new people, distance from the nest, beating those wings just a bit. I've experienced that each encounter imprints new thoughts and ideas about the world. How fortunate I am to have friends, family, that are good people, great people to sheperd my fledgelings. If they must spread their wings, how wonderful to do it in the company of high moral standards, good habits, and love.
I fought so hard for custody of these little ones. I even kept the right sized extinguisher close to the stove per government regulation. I cried happy tears as the judge declared each one to be my legal child. Mine. All mine. I didn't realize that each day I'd give them up more and more... that their whole childhood was teaching them to fly away from me.
YET... In allowing them to fly, in giving them to themselves to discover, they return freely... not out of need for food or shelter but for love.