I Let Go.

I love country music. My first memory of hearing country music is of my dad playing Johnny Cash-Live at San Quentin State Prison. In my memory, Johnny Cash played all of the time at our house. I’m sure that’s not true. My mom was known to crank some Diana Ross and also The 5th Dimension…hello, Age of Aquarius/Let the Sunshine in. Bad Company and the Eagles were the first two albums I ever had of my very own. Totally fit right in with my rock n’ roll/rebellion era. But country music and I go way back and, while I still love rock and most music including classical, if you ride with me in Fancy Pants *The Wild Boy’s nickname for my new car,* you’ll probably hear country music.

One of my current faves is Dierks Bentley’s I Hold On. I’m a huge fan of Dierks and this song does not disappoint. Being a bonafide control freak, I Hold On is right down my ally and could be my theme song in life. Has been, thus far. I hold on to stuff. I want to hold on to my children. I hold on to the pain. I hold on to the bad stuff that has happened, been said or I have done. I hold on…to everything. It’s all about control, baby.

That’s not God’s plan for me. For us. I shared with y’all my book ban fail last week. Turns out I was wise to fail that day. Whispers of Hope is just what I need. Today’s devotion, Day Three, was a huge ah-ha smack in the gut. It’s not about me. Yes, I knew that already. But really, it’s not about me. It’s not about what I want everyone else to be doing. It’s not about what I want to focus on. It’s not about what I want to write about. I guess it all boils down to this: why are we here? Right now. Today. In this place. To focus on ourselves? To do whatever the heck we want; when we want to? And when I’m saying we…I’m really meaning me.

I don’t believe…finally…that it is all about me. Or ever about me, except for how me relates to we. I have to be honest with y’all…being totally focused on me is exhausting and frustrating. So I’m letting go of me. I mean, it hasn’t been working for me for 53 years now so maybe it’s time to try something new? I’m thinking that focusing on God and what He wants me to be doing is going to take the pressure off. Focusing on giving and serving and just plain old loving those around me. Oh, and that doesn’t mean I get to slack *continue to slack* when it comes to loving me and taking care of me. Just the opposite, I think. I can’t do anything without taking care of me. I don’t think that is selfish. I think it is obedience.

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Letting Go.

When I held him in my arms the very first time, it is true that I wasn’t exactly wondering if he would one day become a NFL player, rocket scientist, lead in a rock band or the next JFK. Mostly because his father was whooping it up with the doctor that we were all wrong and it IS A BOY and I was barely able to focus on our newborn because I was so distracted by My Man’s pure and loud joy. ┬áTurns out, The Big Boy lives for baseball, loves history, camo and country music and is, decidedly, a conservative Republican.

But, I think it is safe to say that we all have, if not dreams, hopes for our children as they grow. We hope they will do well in school. We hope they will be good and kind. We hope they will embrace our morals, values and religion. We hope they will stay out of trouble. Nothing wrong with any of that.

Sometimes, though, our hopes become pressure; even obsession. We focus on what we want for our child. Not necessarily what they want. The pressure to make certain grades; take specific classes. Excel in everything they put their hand to.

When they fall short, and they will at some point, we might be disappointed, frustrated. Angry, even. We have lost sight of the big picture. We need to go back to our basic hopes for our child. It is often difficult to let go of our plans for our children as they mature. But, we must.

I confess that I have had to do some letting go with each of our three children. Whether by their own choices, circumstances or injury, some of my dreams and plans for my three darlings have been totally busted. This last year especially, I have forced myself to step back; see the big picture.

And you know what? I like what I see. Giving attention to the detail, the heart of each of them, they are good and kind and compassionate. They love Jesus. They love serving and helping others less fortunate than they. They have, or will be continuing their education in fields of their choosing.

The outside wrapping may not all be what I wanted or expected or, dare I say, even hoped. But I can see now that it is going to be something even better.

Love you guys.