Sometimes the hardest thing to let go of is the thing you never really had.

– Unknown

me and amberMy oldest daughter is entering her senior year of high school, and is emerging into this beautiful young woman with thoughts,feelings, and desires of her own.  She is beginning to write her own script, and venture off her own porch, and as I have taken this journey myself, it requires many relationships to change.  What I wasn’t prepared for is that our relationship is changing as well, and it is downright hard to let go of my baby girl.  Yes there are still things for me to teach her, rules and boundaries that are non-negotiable, but it is time for her to live.   Since the day I found out that I was pregnant with her, my life has not been the same.  She taught me what unconditional love is. When she hurts, I feel her pain.  When she is happy, I feel her joy. When she is scared, I feel her fear.  When I began this journey of living authentically off the porch, I began planting so many seeds of wisdom into her spirit, and she has been one of my biggest cheerleaders.  However, now as she is emerging into her own woman, and is venturing off her own porch; while I am proud, I am also sad and terrified at the same time.  I controlled what entered her world, but now my role is to be more of a supportive spectator as her life unfolds.  We’ve raised her well, but I am being challenged from deep within to trust myself, trust her, let go, and watch what has been a part of my every being, fly on her own.  She has to learn and grow from her own experiences and choices without fear of disappointing me or anyone else.  That is what she has seen me model and admires.  That is what I’ve told her I want for her.  So why is it so hard?  Because letting go of a part of you is not easy!  She has to live, make mistakes, and even fail, and she has to do those things on her own terms, and I have to let her.  Ouch…hurts even writing it.

Living life authentically, off the porch, with honesty and faith is NOT easy, especially when it comes to the closest people in your life.  Each week, it seems that I am tested in some way shape or form, and I am forced to face my truth, no matter how difficult.  The truth with my daughter is that no matter how much I try to protect (control) her life, it was never mine to begin with.  She was entrusted to me to nurture, teach, love, and always be here, and I’ve done that.  Once you make the choice to live authentically off the porch, you can’t choose not to be off the porch with certain people. Not even your kids.  Each day, situation, and relationship presents challenges, and it is up to you to stay strong, clear, and trust your gut, while not letting self-doubt, insecurity, or negativity plague what you know to be true.  How do you do that?  You call a friend who will be real with you.  You call a sister who will encourage you.  You call your coach who will help you work through the underlying issues.  You cry your eyes out, and converse with God, and learn to trust.  You do whatever it takes, but you DO NOT return to the porch.

My Takeaways:

  1. Living off the porch isn’t easy, but returning to the porch is not an option.
  2. Letting go of control and perfectionism is necessary for authentic relationships to emerge, even if it is your child.
  3. Having a support network is essential for your life.

My challenge for you:

  1. In what ways are you still on the porch and playing it safe or small out of fear of what might happen?
  2. What would it take for you to let go?
  3. Who could you call to support and hold you accountable in this area?
  4. Just Do It!