I went to bed late last night, waiting for my son to return after driving to an out-of-town football game with his girlfriend — for the very first time. When he got home, we stayed up for an additional hour while he vented about traffic and detours, my eyes fluttering open and closed with each word. He was home and he was safe. And to a mother who is learning to adjust to her child’s growing independence; his distance away from her, that is all that mattered.
During the period of time when he was away, I thought about many scenarios of danger and tragedy, second-guessing the decision to let him go. I couldn’t help it, even though my son uses good judgment and I have faith in all my years of parenting. It’s just a few hours, everything will be fine, I told myself.
During each one of those tenuous moments, I felt just how deeply I love my son. And it was during those moments that I thought of other mothers who felt exactly the same way but didn’t have the same outcome. My useless worry transformed into empathy, and the unfair, fragile nature of life hit me very hard. But even so, I was grateful for those feelings.
Last night was “new pillow night” in my home as well, and as my head finally rested on a soft, fluffy, new pillow, I lifted my thoughts in thanksgiving for my family’s safety and security, something all parents value above all else, realizing I have so much to be thankful for.
Happy Thanksgiving to all those who celebrate ~
With my love,