I have so many friends whose children are leaving for college. I know this happens every year but this year they are friends of my grandsons so it is hitting a bit closer. When my son left for college it was difficult but all seemed to be in order and he was ready so I was ready. When we took my daughter to college I knew that my role was changing and I was so sad.
I had been a mother for over 20 years and that had indeed been the most important role in my life. I was never alone and life was so full of joys and challenges and yet it was all perfect. I have always been one to future pace myself and think about when something happens how I will react. So I thought about next year at this time when my son was s senior and tried to prepare for the changes. My role in life did actually change as each child found their wings.
I honestly didn't think I could breathe as we drove away and left my daughter. She was so excited about the new experience and new friends and I knew it was the right thing to do but it was so painful.
We had a long drive home and as we drove I began to remember what mother often said. She said, "You must give your children roots and wings." The roots are their connection to family, community, country and the ability to stand on their own. Roots help our children to make decisions for themselves and create resources around them that will support them in the future.
I remember being so proud of my children when I heard them talk about their friends, mentors and other individuals they had found to help them through difficult times. Some were their age but others might have been closer to my age. I was so happy to know that they had the skills to create a good support system for themselves.
All of a sudden I realized that they had sprouted their wings and could fly on their own. It didn't happen all at once but little by little they faced challenges and they also found solutions for themselves. I saw those wings appear and pretty soon they began to soar on their own. As they developed their wings there were many ups and downs but their wings became stronger with each event.
As I look back now with pride I know my mother was right. Develop those strong roots when your children are young and when it is time they will sprout their wings. God bless all our children as they learn to soar into their incredible future.