Do the hard thing.

To say my brain is a bit frazzled of late would be an understatement and the events of today have only served to prove it.

My 11 year old daughter had try-outs for a sport after school, meaning that she needed to be picked up later than usual. So I planned my day around picking her up at the appointed time. As it was raining, I figured the try-outs would be in the massive auditorium her school has. I turned up, the hall was full of seating and NO STUDENTS.

Now, I should point out right here that one of my children not being where they are supposed to be at any given time is a major panic button for me. Throw any other crisis at me and I am rational, logical, calm. I am generally your ‘go to girl’ for anything – except if one of my children isn’t where they should be.

I began, as you can imagine, to run (something I typically avoid at all costs). I ran to the sports office, frightening, I suspect, the poor teacher sitting quietly at his desk, frantically asking where my daughter was. Then I ran to the main admin, rang the buzzer about 13 times and started going into all those ‘staff only’ places. Then I ran to the middle school admin block and then I ran when I saw my daughter patiently waiting for me.

If you’ve ever lost a child in a shopping centre, in a park, anywhere – you will know the feelings that swept through me as soon as I clapped eyes on her. I cried. Which made her cry. Which made me cry even more. We hugged as though we’d been separated for months instead of just one day and only an hour and half more than normal.

You see, I missed the call on my phone to tell me try-outs were cancelled, and forgot to call the number I hadn’t recognised back when I got home. I didn’t look at the two emails telling me the same thing.

Because my head is full and it’s making me scatterbrained.

Because in one week, one of my children will be hopping on a Nepal bound plane and won’t be on the return flight for eight weeks.

Eight. Weeks.

She is going with a great organisation. She will be doing all sorts of wonderful volunteering activities. She will be having the time of her life. And I couldn’t be more excited for her.

At barely 18 years old, she is stepping into the life God planned for her. She is stretching her wings. Stretching her faith.

She is bold. Brave and gutsy. “I want to do it because it’s hard. Because I don’t want a ‘safe’ life. And what are we doing if we’re not helping people?”

And this mama’s heart is breaking and bursting with pride all at the same time. Her bravery inspires me. Her courage gives me courage, urges me to rally and not get stuck on ‘what ifs’. If she’s brave enough to go, I need to be brave enough to let her. If her faith is big enough at 18, mine surely better be at 43.

So how’s this mama going to cope with an eight week trip to Nepal when a simple time mix up sends her into a flat spin?

I guess I’ll just have to take my lead from my now grown up baby – be brave. Do the hard thing. And have faith.

……I might have to add a little wine to that list though 😉

 

 

4 thoughts on “Do the hard thing.

  1. I still remember the time I was shopping with my boy (he was about 7 or 8 I think), and suddenly I couldn’t find him. He was just there! Turns out he was playing, hiding in the clothes rack. Scared the crap outta me. I don’t think I’ve ever been that scared. Then when he was about 16, he was going away to military academy. In a neighboring state. That was tough, but he was glad to be going. Then he joined the military and would be many states away. Then, years later, Iraq. I think I know where you are coming from. But if the child wants to spread his/her wings, then we must take our claws out of them. For a child to want to do bigger and better things, do good for others – well, that’s awesome. Though tough to take if they are going to be far away from us.

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    • Yes, we’ve already had one move to another state to join the Def force so are no strangers to kids leaving and taking a piece of your heart along with them 🙂 It’s all relative – in the grand scheme of life and certainly in light of what life is now like for the Nepalese after the two earthquakes, it’s not huge BUT it is hard. We are all going to learn things about ourselves over the next eight weeks, I think 🙂

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  2. Somewhere in the boxes of “stuff” I have stored 3000 miles away is my copy of Kalil Gibran’s The Prophet. (Can ya tell how old I am??? That was our guidebook in the 60s.) In his comments on children, he says our children are the arrows we shoot from our bow. Letting go of that bow string and launching our children into their own lives is certainly one of the hardest parts of being a parent. But it’s also the sign that we’ve done our job as parents or else that our children have survived nicely in spite of our failings. I think it’s probably a little of each.

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    • Yes, I love that analogy especially when you put it together with Psalm 127 in the bible which talks about children being arrows in our quiver – God intended them to be launched into their own life. Thanks for the timely reminder Esther 🙂

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