December 29 – Defining Moment. Describe a defining moment or series of events that has affected your life this year.
The term unconditional love is one that I have been toying with these last few days. It seems that it is such a cliché term. But what does it really mean? I have learned over this year as a parent that it means it is okay to not like their choices and it being incredibly disappointed does not take away the human love that exists between parent and child.
The experience of watching and witnessing my son over the last year has helped to define me as mother and as woman.
The defining moment came when throughout his difficult journey, I have learned–sometimes with great challenge–to let go, to know that I have done the very best I could and to know that this is his stuff.
Balancing the mother in me that hates to know that he is suffering with the balance that he has created this and it is his learning process. The old adage ‘tough love’, is not only tough on the child, but I believe tough on the parent.
I am proud of the way that I raised him. I am proud of the way that our relationship has evolved as he enters adulthood. I am proud of the way in which I have stepped back, waiting patiently until he decides he is ready for change. His time and my time may tick at different paces and I have learned to accept that.
I worry that he is cold. I worry he is hungry. I worry that this will be a pattern that exists throughout his life.
I no longer worry that it was something I did, or didn’t do. I no longer wake in the night frantic to save him. I no longer take ownership of his choices.
I have accepted that his life hasn’t become what I had hoped for him. I hold hope that he finds his way. And I know that whatever way that is will be his way.