Letting Go is NOT Giving Up

August 31, 2010 § 4 Comments

This post is inspired by Heather @ Swiss Army Wife and her recent expression of the difference between giving up and letting go.  It’s a great read and I could really relate to it.

Heather wrote:

“To me, giving up means I felt defeated in some way, maybe I felt the situation was impossible.  I let it go.  I let go of the illusion that I actually have control over these children, as if they weren’t their own human beings.”

And that pretty much sums up my on-going parenting experience.

Despite being only 16 when I had Son, I had a keen internal idea, even if not fully conscious or outwardly expressed, that I didn’t own him.  I knew that his presence in my life was a gift and one that was eternally precious.

Not to mention that I was an uneducated teenage runaway, who the hell was I to dictate shoulds?  So even though I was completely unaware of it, from birth I raised my Son with the humility that we don’t really know anything and the determination to practice what’s right anyway.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying I’m, by any means anything close to, a perfect parent.  What I am saying is that I never felt it right to try to control my children’s behaviour with punishment, threats and ultimatums.

That doesn’t mean I didn’t.  For years I did and I’m still trying to undo the damage that those mixed signals have sent.  Yes, even after 22 years of parenting I’m still learning and still making mistakes.

But what 22 years of loving another human being more than I thought possible has definitely taught me is that letting go of the idea that you have any right to control your child is NOT the same as giving up on them.

Thanks for the reminder Heather.


§ 4 Responses to Letting Go is NOT Giving Up

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