Well, I don’t want to beat this to death.  But I think for me to really, honestly, track this process from the parental standpoint, ok, the mom angle, I’ve gotta just put a quick blip up on blog.

This is hard.

This giving your son to God, it’s kinda hard. Oh yeah, it’s joyous and deep and profound and all that…. But the clear hard fact is that we are saying goodbye for reals, and he is not only moving far away, he’s giving up his worldly life.  Which means, learning to detach from us too in many ways.  And it means us learning to detach from  him.  And I type that and feel the hot tears.  I hold myself tighter as I blink hard to keep typing, fast, get it out before the flood hits and/or to let me blink even FASTER to push that tide back, again.

And I know, this is all a personal pity party in many ways.  It’s all tangled, happy sad proud amazed worried:  I am truly deeply tap dancing happy for him as he enters, for  this beckoning call, his ability to recognize it and respond.  And I know that many a mom has said goodbye to her son to go to war across the world, with legitimate fears for his safety. I get that.  Utterly.  I mean, I’m sending by son to Cincinnati, for heaven’s sake. Not Afghanistan.  The irony is not lost on me.  My dork factor and wallowing ability makes duck my head in shame even as I can laugh at the/my stupidity of it all.  I know that my fears for his times of lonely and spiritual struggle are something each of us go through, no matter our circumstances in life. Some of the loneliest times can be IN a marriage.  So, I cannot protect him from any of it.  Nor should I try. And while I want to, I know that I can’t and really, shouldn’t want to because it’s part of the process he, we all, must go through.

But anyhow.  I’m bad at goodbyes.  We are in the countdown weeks now.  And I’m feeling the pressure, brittle, tired, leaky.  I can still savor these days and  hours with him, and I do.  But, another part of me wants to drive him straight up to the Novitiate house right now so I can get him there safely.  It feels like battles are afoot.  Spiritual battles, even.  But that’s a whole ‘nother post and I just heard the few  readers I have click away anyhow, because now they know I”m a nutcase.

But, I  need to say, for any mom going through this too….it’s amazing but it is hard.  And it’s a loaded few weeks ahead.  And I’m a bit brittle and holding tight, carrying myself carefully as I walk through these days so I don’t fall to pieces.  I’m leaking…feels a bit like the little dutch boy……holding back the dam.

5 thoughts on “Brittle

  1. A very wise person once pointed out to me that the Blessed Mother did not try to stop or dissuade or caution or hold back her beloved Son. She had entered so fully into his vocation that she did not try to stop him – but she did feel the sword pass through her. If she went through that flood – felt that sword – then surely feeling it is the right way.

    You have set for him an example of “all in” bravery in the face of what you’re being asked to do. It’s your bravery and willingness he takes with him to this calling. God love you, you’re one of the most stubbornly brave people I’ve ever “met” (even though we’ve never met) – and it’s not weakness, cowardice or unbelief when you drown for the moment in a baptism. It’s holy. Let the tide come in. Do not hold back the dam. When you have been immersed in the flood – choosing to feel as well as to live God’s call for your son, God makes you new.

  2. Re: “clicking away due to nutcase factor”. Don’t you EVER censor what is in your heart based on some automated tallying. They’re probably counting all of the times I’ve checked in to see if I’m missing any of your wise and heartfelt insights 🙂 Or re-reading, for goodness sakes. Yep, these posts are that good.

    As for the “reals” part. All I can do is send love and support. And admit that, if I were in your shoes, I would probably do you one better in the pity party department. “Yes, go follow your calling, but don’t leave ME in the process! That’s not what I meant all these years when I was telling you to find your path.” “Yikes, did I do my job TOO well?” “But it HURTS MY FEELINGS that you would leave.” Honestly, I would go there. ‘Cuz when I regress, I regress. And underneath the pride, and the awe, and the respect, and the daunting admiration I would feel for this courageous discernment, there would still be a loss. And it is powerful enough that even as I chime in here, I am surprised to find tears running down my cheeks at the mere thought of being in your shoes. And I have the luxury of just playing with the idea.

    So – you keep writing if you need to and know that for every post, what you write resonates DEEPLY. And that you, my long lost friend, are setting a beautiful example of parenting for all of us to follow.


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