Riley just returned from his church group's winter camp. They got in 8 hours later then they had anticipated but we didn't mind as it was more time Riley got to spend being a normal 12 year old boy. He shared with us pictures and videos of his weekend adventure and my heart about stopped when I saw him racing down a snow covered hill in an inner-tube. I personally want to put all my kids in a bubble so they never suffer a single injury after my 7 year old suffered both a broken leg and elbow in less then a year from P.E. injuries. Of course, they boys are very proud of they injuries and scars and consider them accomplishments. As a girl who spent her childhood in dance, music and theater I never understood boys who relished in pushing the limits. Yet, part of me feels so proud that my boys enjoy life to the fullest and are willing to risk slight injury for these short-term activities that are meant to be nothing more then FUN!
I am reminded that while my job is to love, support, and provide for the needs of my children it is also my job to let them discover who they are, what they are capable of and just let go at times. When you have an ailing child that is even more difficult to do....yet my Riley was so happy to just be free and push beyond his own limits. Of course Monday he spent sleeping since he used all his energy trying to keep up with his peers over the course of the weekend, but it seemed worth it.
I have been working very hard at allowing my children to speak for themselves when it comes to their quality of life in certain areas. I allow them to decide who they want in their lives and how they feel about those individuals. I allow them to decide what activities they want to try and explore. I will even allow them to decide what foods they like and don't (yes sometimes it means I cook 2 separate meals). I want them to feel like they have some control in their own lives even as a child, I want them to feel comfortable with who they are and why they are. So sometimes it requires this Type A personality mom to let go and let them just be.
We are not guaranteed tomorrow, only this moment...so thanks to my wise 12 year old....Why not make the best of it?? I am so fortunate to learn about myself and about life through the eyes of my beautiful children, they are so much wiser then us adults. When did we lose that spark for life??