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August 7, 2014

Let Them Go

Image: Flickr/Anna Yanev Photography

Image: Flickr/Anna Yanev Photography

“How selfhood begins with a walking away, and love is proved in the letting go.” (Robert Cecil-Day Lewis)

In order to become their own people, our children must walk away from us in one way or another. In a literal sense, they work their way from crawling to cruising, and before we know it, they’re ready to let go of our hands and toddle off into the wide world. They’re ready to take another step towards independence, towards selfhood. They’re ready to figure out where you end and where they begin.

Because we love them and want them to grow, we let go. This is just the first of many time we’ll have to let go of our kids. We have to let go when they sleep over at a friend’s house, when they head to school, when they have their first crush, when they borrow the keys to the car. If we don’t learn to let go of their chubby little hands again and again, we’re asking them to carry not only their weight around, but ours as well.

Remember this, and, as your child asks you to let go little-by-little, do it. They will certainly skin their knees along the way (more than once), but they’ll also be learning how to run with grace and endurance…something they can’t always do with someone else tagging along.

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