One day I will be sitting across from one of my daughters, big eyes staring, hopeful, silently pleading, and she will be asking me to trust her. She will want to go out with a boy I don't like, attend a party that scares me, go to a concert of a band I think is rediculous. She will be asking for me to let her go. To let her grow up. To let her make the same mistakes I did.
I won't want to.
I will not see a little girl all grown up. I will see a 5 year old asking me to let her drive a car. Kiss a boy. Play with matches.
The reality will hit. I will have to let her go. Have to trust her. Have to hope that my mothering was good enough to protect her from the things that can hurt her.
I pray with all of my might that I will be able to do it. That I won't suffocate her with my overbearing wants to protect her. That I won't make her feel as if she has not earned the opportunity to grow and explore and learn that there is both good and bad right in front of her every day.
When I watch her walk out of our house, the house that I watched her take her first steps in; the house with the bedroom that has been painted for the 5th time to match her personality; the house where her hand prints from preschool still sit proudly displayed in the kitchen; the house where her photos show a beaming, innocent smile, I will pray that she return safely.
But when she does not. I pray that I will remember clearly the pain of a broken heart. The pain when the boy she loves chooses another. The confusion endured when a trusted friend asks her to do something that she know she should not. And the guilt of making decisions that her mother may not approved of.
I pray that I will understand that she will try to keep secrets that she is afraid I will hear. That she will tell lies to cover her tracks. That she will buck the rules because that is what growing up dares us to do.
I fear that the things I think I am teaching her won't be enough. But I pray they are.
I fear that the world will take advantage of her before she knows how to protect herself. But I pray they don't.
I fear that I won't be able to remember what it is like to explore my independence when she is asking me to. But I pray I will be able to.
I fear that I won't be the most important person to her then as I am now.
But I pray that one day later, I will be again.
My daughter will sit across from me and ask me to let her go.
I won't want to. Not even a little bit.
I pray for my motherhood. That I can be mature, intelligent, full of love and respect their entire lives. That when the phase of dealing with their inability to share with their sisters morphs overnight into dealing with a decision that could alter their lives, that I will be able to handle it like a mature adult. Not a scared mother who wants to go back to the diaper days so that I can control what happens to them.
I pray that I can say yes, 'I trust you.' when she asks.
And really mean it.
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