I can’t help but cry as I walk away from my daughter in her dorm room, and drag my weeping heart towards the beach. It all finally catches up to me and sinks in deep. The reality that I’m leaving her. That she grew up. That my baby is no longer a baby under my roof, but a grown woman starting her new adventure in life . . . far away from me.
As I drift down the sandy road I can’t help but feel like I want a do over. I want to go back to when she was a baby, a little girl. The toddler years! Yes, those years I want a do over the most. I want a chance to return and rewrite that time so I would have been more present, more patient, and more aware to treasure those moments and softly love and cuddle my little girl. But I can’t. I don’t get a “do over”, instead I get a “let go”.
I feel so torn as my heart desires two completely different outcomes simultaneously. I want her to fly into this new adventure and seize every moment, and yet I long for her to be my little girl again and need her mommy. I want her to miss me and cling to my side, but I also wish for her to be so happy, excited, and involved that she is too busy having the best time in her life to miss her dear, old mom.
I arrive at the beach and look up to see the sky through my tear soaked eyes when I realize it is dusk. The sun is setting behind the horizon, bringing an end to not only this day, but this chapter in my life as her mommy. The majority of me does not want to turn the next page, but rather reread the previous ones over and over again. But that is not an option. Tomorrow I will get on a plane that will force me to fly forward into this next chapter whether I want to or not.
The tears spill down onto my cheeks as I stare out into the ocean. Memories of her childhood color my mind and I try to figure out how I let my sweet little girl go. I start to think back to the time when she was a baby. How I was so protective of her. How selective I had been about who could hold her, not wanting to let her in someone else’s hands. I knew the few people whom I trusted to hold her would take her from me very delicately, and cautiously cradle her little head in the palms of their hands. I could see how their arms protected and supported her as I transitioned her into their care.
Those memories may be 18 years old, but today I still feel like she is that little, helpless, newborn baby. The difference now is that this time I am not placing her into visible hands, but instead I am transitioning her into the hands of an invisible God. I don’t need to see His hands to know that they are real. However, I still can’t help but ask the question, “Do you have her Lord? Do you really have her?”
I am placing her into His hands but I can’t see if He really has a hold of her. I don’t want to let go until I know He has her, but deep inside I sense that I will never know He has her . . . until I let go.
So I make a choice. I choose to trust Him, and I give her back to Him. I placed her in His hands on the beach and while holding my breath . . . I let go. In my spirit I know that the days to come will test this act of faith, and I will have to actively choose on a daily basis to believe He has her in His hands.
Is that you too? Are you having difficulty letting your precious one in His hands? If so join me, and let’s make this our daily prayer:
Dear Heavenly Father,
I trust you. I know your hands are strong and mighty, loving and kind. I place my child into your hands and I stand on your word. Please help me choose to believe you on the good days and bad. Let me rest in knowing that your love is greater than my own, and your plans surpass mine.Thank you for the great gift you have granted me in raising my child, and guide this precious one along your path. In Jesus name, Amen.
“ . . . and they will never perish; and no one will snatch them out of My hand.” John 10:28