12 November 2009

Scared

As he rode his tricycle out of the driveway and into the middle of the cul-de-sac, my heart stopped. He was out of our driveway and in the danger zone. I couldn't protect him out there. But I need to learn to let go. I can't postpone this. I can't just think Oh, well, he'll leave for college/job/world travel in sixteen years. I'll think about letting go then. No. I need to do it in increments. Today? Cul-de-sac. Tomorrow, next street up. Next week? I don't fucking know, we'll think about that when we get there. But right now, I need to get over my fear. It's just a cul-de-sac at 10:30 in the morning. No one is out at this time of day. Everyone in the neighborhood is either at work or at school or hunkered down in their houses, making beds and folding laundry. No one is even thinking about getting in their cars. It's safe. It's OK. I can do this. I can let go. I know he can turn away and forge his own path because there he goes, trucking up the street on his Radio Flyer tricycle like he owns the joint. If he owns this cul-de-sac at 2-1/2, then he'll own the world by the time he's 30. I have to give him those wings. I have to allow him to fly and not hold him back for selfish reasons. I shouldn't keep him in the driveway just because of some hormonal issue causing me to fear a cavernous, empty house in 16 years. Ty-man and I will have plenty to talk about when that time comes. I'm sure we'll be at the Cracker Barrel gabbing away over our low-fat grilled teriyaki chicken. We won't be like those other "empty nesters" who have nothing to say to one another because the only things holding them together were carting the kids to football games, band camp, and chess club.

And then, I thought, Screw it. Three times to the center of the cul-de-sac is enough. That boy has to come back into the driveway. Because every mother has her limits, you know? And that was mine.

18 comments:

Ginny said...

I loved this like crazy.

Chelsie said...

Letting go is all relative. Maybe next time it will 5 times out and back.

Molly's Mom said...

I hear ya!

Joe @ IrrationalDad said...

What are you going to do when he brings a girl home on the handlebars?!?!?!

Her name will be Lissa. I only say that because my word verification was "bedlissa" today. I won't even speculate on the "bed" part, because I just care about you too much.

Ashlie- Mommycosm said...

Letting go is WAY over rated. Baby steps.

Finn said...

Letting go is so hard. Easing into it seems like the right way to go. You have about 16 years to accomplish it, what's the rush?

Employee No. 3699 said...

It's not easy, especially with the youngest one.

Patois said...

Amen, sistah! Third time's the charm. For now.

Annie said...

I love this. It is so true. We live on a super-busy street, so I freak out if they go to the end of our front walk and even pretend to turn onto the street-side walk.

Good luck. One deep breath at a time.

Not Afraid to Use It said...

Exactly what Ashely said. It's overrated and will come whether you want it to or not. Setting limits on letting go is good. The first steps toward learning when to fly and when to ground themselves.

Ren said...

Wait, you actually went outside for this? Must be a mom thing. I just sit in my chair and tell the kids to come home when the street lights turn on.

Sometimes they even manage to call me from a friend's house before those lights come on.

Faiqa said...

Let go? Never. Mostly because I can't pry her off of my leg. ;-)

hello haha narf said...

i love reading posts like this and thinking about my own parents, stretching my memory in order to remember their reactions to my little milestones. xoxo

sybil law said...

I definitely know!!!!
xo

marty said...

When he's in his 50s, it's ok to let go. I keep telling my mother that.

DutchBitch said...

OMG that would be MY limit as well, LOL

Team Russi said...

Nobody tells you how hard the "little", every day moments will be. Good for you for letting him go. That is mama strength!

A Free Man said...

I think this is where Dads and Moms are different. Every step forward, every glimmer of independence just fills me with pride. Now if I could just get the older one to step out of nappies, that would result in all kinds of pride.