Monday, August 10, 2015

And...She's Off!

When my firstborn Madison was small, I loved taking her outside to play. Just she and I. While Steve was at work, we would swing on her swing set, blow and chase bubbles and play catch with her big blue ball. I loved it and so did she. I loved being in our back yard, just the two of us...in our own little world. And so did she. Except...as I soon learned...as much as she was just like me...my Madison was her own person. And as content as I was to exist in our own little world...my little girl was not. I remember her little head with her little bow turning toward the sounds of the neighbor kids as they rushed by on their bikes. She would run to the front yard and watch the other kids as they played baseball in the neighbor's yard. Her eyes would light up anytime any other kids were around. And I smiled and cried inside. I realized...my girl wanted to go.

When she was a little older, we went to the beach. I was so excited to set up all her brand new Sesame Street beach toys and buckets and shovels. I envisioned Steve and I and my parents all sitting on the beach under our colorful umbrella, watching Madison with her little sunhat playing in the glistening sand. And...we did. For a short time. Until my little lady realized other families with small children were nearby. And my Madison was up...making her way to the nearest family...saying, "Hi! I'm Madison! Want to play with me?" And again...I smiled. And I cried inside. As much as I wanted to bury my nose in my book and pretend no one else existed, my girl wanted to make new friends. And so we did. And I realized...my girl wanted to go.

You see, I realized there on that beach, that my Madison was not just MY baby. As much as I longed for her to belong only to me, and share all my feelings and ideas, she was her own person. She had her own ideas and feelings and desires. When you are handed that sweet smelling bundle of joy in the hospital, you are filled with such emotion...joy, relief, thankfulness...and often, as I did, you may forget that this little person needs you to love her and feed her and change her and teach her and protect her. Yet she needs something else. She needs you to allow her to be her own person. To realize she does not belong to you as a doll filled with stuffing does. She is her own person. She has her own thoughts and desires. She may want different things than you do. And that is alright. It really is.

My Madison is grown now. She is no longer that curly haired little girl with the matching bows and sunhats. She is a beautiful, intelligent, independent young woman. And she still wants to go. She still wants to spread her wings and fly. She wants to go places, and meet people, and see new things. And that is what she is doing right now. And I could not be happier for her. : )

Last week, my girl flew across the ocean to spend a few weeks with her Nicolas and his family. She did it all by herself. She flew into a huge airport in New York City, and found and boarded a plane and flew to Denmark. All by herself. I am so proud of her for doing this...for going where her heart is leading her. And not being afraid. She went past the front yard...past the closest family on the beach...she went across the ocean and is experiencing so many new and wonderful things.

She is doing this without Steve and I by her side, but not without the love and faith and values we have shared with her throughout her life. And so...I am alright. I miss her like crazy. I look forward to every text and phone call. But my heart is happy. She found an amazing young man who loves her and takes care of her and protects her and who has a wonderful family who also loves her and cares for her, and who has welcomed her into their home. My girl has always wanted to go. And now...she has. She will return  full of experiences and memories to hold on to and share. Until she goes again.


All set to go...


Grandma was there. Just as she was the day she was born. : )


Nicolas snapped this for me when she arrived in Denmark...before she even saw him. : )


My girl and her man.



Prayers for my girl and her safe return are welcome, my friends!

25 comments:

  1. What a wonderful adventure. Praying she comes home safe! She looks so happy and that makes a mama's heart happy!

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  2. Well I'm crying. I am so happy for Madison (and a little jealous as Denmark is easily my top country to visit!) and I am thankful for your great perspective. The idea of my babies wanting to go already makes me cry but I know you're right. :)

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  3. Hope she has a wonderful adventure, and time with her man. :)

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  4. Oh how wonderful (smiles)....keeping her, Nicolas, his family and you in prayer. I can't wait to read more of her adventure--prayerfully she will share. Blessings

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  5. You have to love them enough to let them go and know in your heart she loves you enough always to come back. Its hard letting them go, praying for her safe return. Sending you a hug from one Mama to another.

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  6. Oh my friend what a heartfelt post. You have been on my mind this last week❤️.

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  7. What a great adventure for a lovely, intelligent, and very loved young lady. Cant wait to see more pictures and hear what she has to say. Happy her fellow's family is welcoming, as you all were to him not too long ago.

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  8. Such beautiful words, Billie Jo. And how exciting for Madison! Wow. I am so impressed she's traveling by herself. What a great experience.
    Be assured of my prayers for her. Can't wait to hear all about it.

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  9. I hope she has a wonderful trip! It's hard watching them go do things without us, but that's the way it's supposed to be! ....sigh....

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  10. Beautiful words to convey what's in your mother's heart. She continues to be in my prayers for as safe trip.

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  11. As I've said before, we are always in the process of letting them go. I am so happy for her. I feel the emotions that are pinned with these words as I know you are proud of her. I pray blessings upon you all!

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  12. You're a good mom! Love to you!

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  13. What true words straight from a mothers heart. I keep joking that my kids will live with me forever since they don't like going places nor do they know how to do enough on their own. lol. We have time and I'll need that time to adjust to the idea of them spreading their wings and leaving me behind. All in good time.
    Hopefully all goes well on her trip and a safe return.

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  14. So sweet! What a amazing girl - young woman you've raised! Way to go to you and your hubs! I'm sure she's having a wonderful time! Prayers for safe travels for her!

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  15. Wow, that so scares me. I don't want my littlest to grow up, but they are. I'm afraid to let go one day, but I know I will. This post gives me a little more strength and courage to let them grow and become amazing adults! Thanks for sharing this lovely story. Prayers for her safe return!!!

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  16. Thanks for your prayers, everyone!

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  17. Very sweet post. They grow up too quickly!

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  18. This is such a beautiful post!!! Prayers for her and you cuz we all know how hard it is letting our babies grow!

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  19. Ok, now I'm crying. Not only because this a beautiful post of love from a wonderful Mother about her lovely daughter. But because so many things you shared about young Madison resemble my Annie. My boy was content to always stay close to Mom. My Girl has always wanted to go. To go meet and play with others. To be the social butterfly that she just IS. So it strikes my heart when I read this to think about what the future holds.
    Thanks for always sharing such beautiful family moments with us. Blessings to Madison and wherever her heart leads her. xoxo

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  20. Your words brought tears to my eyes. I always love your reflections on allowing our children to grow up. The selfish part of me never wants my boys to leave me but your posts give me hope that, when it's time, I will let them go. Thank you for that - I cannot tell you how much it helps me as a mom who's babies are still babies. :)

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  21. Oh you are a writer my friend, a beautiful writer whose motherhood and love for her family shines through. This (this blog) is the place where I know that your feelings are true and you are honestly the most inspirational mother to me. Chills, smiles, and happy glistening eyes as I read your heart on this post BJ. Just love

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  22. Such a touching and heart felt post; always hard to let them go.... but teaching them right is definitely a comfort. Will keep her in my prayers for safe travels!

    Blessings,
    Jill

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  23. Oh what a beautiful post! I love your heart and I so miss the daily interaction with you on IG. You are the BEST mother and you have such a wonderful, unencumbered perspective on your purpose in life. You are always an inspiration to me as I cling too tightly and worry too much about my children. Thank you for sharing your bittersweet feelings. Madison will love this adventure in her life even more knowing that her parents are thrilled for her, too. <3 Love to you and your family!

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  24. Thank you for sharing this heartfelt post. I can relate in so many ways as a mother. And I realize how difficult it is for us to let go sometimes. I am glad you did. Safe and happy travels to Madison. All the best! XO

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  25. Praying your beautiful daughter home...safely. What an adventure. For her and mama!

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Thanks so much for saying hello!