08 Sep My Son’s First Sleep-Over: A Challenge In Letting Go
My little boy turned 3-years-old. Time is certainly flying by as I continue to hold on for dear life to this crazy roller coaster ride. As I stared at him today, studying his tall lean little body and listening to his cute banter with his new garbage truck, I had a moment whereby I was truly in awe of him, of his development, of all that he has accomplished in three years.
It’s almost unfathomable that the delicate little baby that I held in my arms so cautiously has grown into this strong, determined, loving little person with a distinct personality.
As my son continues to grow and develop, as a mom, I am doing the same thing right along-side him. I find that I am less rigid, a lot more flexible and am more comfortable letting go of things that are out of my control. My son doesn’t want to nap? Ain’t nothing I could do about that. My son is refusing to eat the delicious chili I made? No sweat. I’ve been challenging my instinct to control things. It hasn’t been easy, but it has definitely been liberating!
The ultimate challenge came a few months ago. I was at a party talking to some fellow moms. When the topic of having couple time AWAY from your kids came up, I was extremely embarrassed to admit that in three years, my husband and I had never been away from our son overnight. In fact, in three years, no one aside from my husband or myself had ever put my son to sleep! As the words came out of my mouth, I realized how crazy this sounded and from the looks on these moms’ faces, I concluded that perhaps I was being a tad controlling and overprotective. I was given the mission to have one night away from my son within the next three months. So when my husband and I received a wedding invitation in the mail a few weeks later, I knew this was a sign. This would be a pivotal test in letting go. My son was going to have his first sleepover!
I’m not going to lie, I was a bit nervous. The fear of not being there, of not being in control, concerned me. But when I learned that my son was having the time of his life with his cousins and instantly went to sleep after his bedtime story, I was floored. I realized I had not given my son enough credit.
It dawned on me that he was old enough and secure enough in his attachment to me to depend on someone else and that perhaps my need for control was in some way holding him back.
My husband and I had a great time, celebrated our feat of letting go, asking ourselves why we hadn’t done this sooner!
I have to say, I am very proud of all that I have achieved as a mom over the past three years. I’ve come a very long way from being that insecure novice, who was constantly fumbling, second guessing, obsessing and over-thinking. Yes, of course I have those days that I wish motherhood came with a manual and I feel like I have no idea what I’m doing. But without sounding cheesy, I feel I have blossomed, and am really coming into my own. Maybe I’ll try to stop holding on for dear life and just enjoy the ride….