This was my living room on Monday evening. Normally I would NEVER take a photo like this let alone post it on the internet. But, this is a significant piece in our life right now.
Our goals in raising our children have always been that by the time they left our house they would be able to function on their own as good citizens of the world. Part of doing that is letting them slowly take the reins in all facets of their life. My daughter has been in control of her education this year. She talks to teachers, emails them with problems in assignments and contacts the school when things are not correct. If needed I may give advice and suggest wording but it is up to her to take care of it. I am slowly letting go….
This is another piece of the letting go. A little over a year ago we asked her if she would like a large Sweet Sixteen party or would she prefer to travel to Europe. She choose the Europe trip. So Monday night, one day after returning from camp, we packed her up and yesterday I drove her to Chicago to begin her trip in Boston.
She flew alone for the first time. She has flown with us and in a school tour group but never on her own. I did accompany her through security and we had lunch before she headed to her gate with about an hour before boarding was to begin. She quickly learned the “joys” of air travel when her flight was delayed for two hours, then three. But, she made it to Boston last night and will be flying to Germany, Italy and Switzerland over the next two weeks.
She will be touring with friends of mine from college. But, she has to figure this out on her own. No asking me what to do or how to fix things. We have practiced and talked about safety, honesty and our values. We have been preparing her to leave the nest and this two-week trial will be just the first of many over the next few years.
I always thought when they were babies it would be the toughest times. No one ever tells you that letting them go so is so painful.