I remember my oldest son’s first trip to the ER. He was covered in hives and his face swelled up like a balloon. Food allergies. The news that no parent wants to hear.
When I first saw the symptoms, I had no idea what was happening and stared in horror as my son, though still breathing, was having visible difficulty doing so. But my husband immediately recognized the signs and rushed him to the car. The staff at the hospital called it a “mild reaction.” I thought they were crazy.
Looking back at the incident, I see that it was during those scary moments racing to the ER that I realized how little control I had over my son’s life. Sure, I played an important role. A critical one. But there were so many things that could happen that were unpredictable. So much uncertainty.
Years later, when my son started kindergarten, I was afraid to let him get on that bus. Every time the phone rang and I recognized the school’s phone number, I thought they were calling to tell me my son was in the hospital. In fact, they were usually calling to ask me if a particular food was okay for him to eat.
As a parent, I struggle to let go. I want to hold my kids and protect them from every force of nature that can harm them in any way. I want to put a protective blanket over them and keep them safe.
But that was never God’s plan.
One of the hardest lessons to learn as a parent is knowing when to release the hold.
I still don’t always get it right. I’m learning every day. But the more I let go, the more I find that there is freedom found in the release.
*This post was written for Five Minute Friday. A group of beautiful, bold writers who meet every Friday to free write for five minutes on one word. Today’s word was: hold. Click the button below to learn more.