Does anyone ever stop worrying about their kids, or am I an anomaly?
I worry about them all, even though they range in age from 26 to 38. And I have now acquired grandchildren and a son-in-law to worry about, too!
Oh, I know. I should leave them to live their lives, and I really try. I bite my tongue so hard sometimes, refraining from giving advice. I stop myself from throwing money at them (money I can ill afford to be throwing around). I work to love and accept and encourage, but not to manage them. I am often successful in doing so… but not always.
It hurts to see them struggle – financially or emotionally. Things seem so much harder now than I had it.
My first husband made good money and I started out married life with a new mobile home on our own city lot and never really wanted for anything. Even after our divorce, when I suddenly found myself to be a working single mom, I had a job I loved, fun friends around me, and relatively well-to-do grandparents who loved to help out with a cheque now and then.
Still, I had my struggles and a lot to learn about life. And where I am now boils down to paths I chose and decisions I made. Did I make mistakes? Oh boy, did I! I made mistakes out the wazoo; I like to think I learned from them.
But back to the kids…
There comes a time when you have to just let go and trust that you’ve given them the smarts and courage to live their own lives and let them deal with their successes and mistakes. Maybe I had a tougher time letting go than some (I battled empty nest syndrome for YEARS), but I am mending and backing away from meddling.
Besides, managing my children’s lives gets in the way of living my own life fully, and lately I’ve been thinking a lot about what I want to do with the second half of my life. All my life I’ve spent a lot of time thinking about and caring for others, from the time I toilet trained my baby sister when I was six.
Now it’s time to start thinking about me.