Letting go

I’m hovering four stories in the air on a little blue platform. A soft wind begins to blow. I’d usually welcome it on a steamy summer day like this, but not at the moment.

Instead of cooling me off, the breeze causes everything around me to sway, increasing my terror.

As my pulse races, I hear a giggle from my dauntless nine-year-old, not far away.

I dare you to cross that rope,” he taunts. “Come on, Mom! I did it, and I didn’t even have anything to hold onto!”

Little stinker.

I’d like to say I gathered up my courage and crossed the rope … but instead I crossed my arms and went down a safer way, determined not to be pressured into something so unpleasant by a rascally little boy!

On the way down, I watched him descend the four stories too, zig-zagging through all the obstacles at lightening speed with not a care in the world.

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“Hey Mom, watch me!” he crowed. “I’m gonna do every single one on every level.” And he did.

I was astounded.

As I watched him navigate his way through the balance beams, platforms, ropes, and webs, something happened to my heart.

I wondered … When did this happen? When did this independent, fearless kid come to live at my house? Wasn’t he just a babe in arms a few days ago?

Then I wondered … Why can’t I be like that?

And then …

I let go.

His courage gave me courage. And I wasn’t afraid anymore.

I climbed the steps all the way back up to the fourth story. And this time my knees weren’t knocking.

I took the dare. I crossed the rope with no hands. It was fun!

To his surprise, my little man had a shadow the rest of the way down: ME! I did every obstacle with lightening speed, too.

I didn’t know I could do that. I unlocked potential I didn’t know was there.

How did I do that?

I let go.

 

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It’s back-to-school time. But this year is different. I sent my youngest to kindergarten yesterday.

No more babies at my house.

No more rocking chairs.

No more preschoolers.

No more diapers or strollers or high chairs.

Just “big kids.”

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As I put my boyos on the bus yesterday I felt an all-too-familiar knot in my stomach.

Stress. Fear. Fear of the unknown.

Just like the platform.

And now I’m asking myself … Can I learn to let go?

If only navigating the waters of parenthood were as easy as learning to overcome my fear of heights!

It’s a journey, I guess.

One day at a time.

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After the boys left, I sat at the piano and played and sang for an hour or so–something I haven’t done in quite a while.

I found some old sheet music from Cirque du Soleil, and the words from a particular song rang all too true. If you’ve never heard it, I encourage you to listen!

The words are fantastic, but the melody is even more hauntingly beautiful.

Let Me Fall

(Cirque du Soleil)

Let me fall 
Let me climb 
There´s a moment when fear 
And dream must collide 

Someone I am 
Is waiting for courage 
The one I want 
The one I will become 
Will catch me 

So let me fall 
If I must fall 
I won´t heed your warnings 
I won´t hear them 

All I ask 
All I need 
Let me open whichever 
Door I might open 

Let me fall 
If I fall 
Through the phoenix may 
Or may not rise 

I will dance so freely 
Holding on to no one 
You can hold me only 
If you too will fall 
Away from all these 
Useless fears and chains 

Someone I am 
Is waiting for my courage 
The one I want 
The one I will become 
Will catch me 

So let me fall 
If I must fall 
I won´t heed your warnings 
I won´t hear 

Let me fall 
If I fall 
There´s no reason 
To miss this one chance 
This perfect moment 
Just let me fall

Songwriters: KEITH EDWARDS, KEITH SEWELL, WENDY WALDMAN
© Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC, Universal Music Publishing Group
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