Tuesday, April 18, 2006

Letting go

There are things we never want to let go of, people we never want to leave behind, but letting go doesn't mean the end of the world, it's the beginning of a new life

It's that phase where a majority of us all dread. When we try to put on a brave front but inside, we're reeling. It's that inevitable phase where mothers' realise that their little ones have grown up and it's time. It's time for them to spread their wings and embark on a new journey. To explore and come across new lands and discoveries. It's also the part where fairytales come to an end. It's hard I guess. But it's unavoidable.

Why is it that letting go is so hard to do? My mum has friends who keep going.."Oh, you can actually bear to see your daughter off to study? I'll never be able to do that...it's hard la". And I begin to wonder. Letting go is a part of life. It's something we're all braced for in some way or other. Be it in a relationship or in this instance, when a child grows up and it's time to leave home. I mean, how long do you expect your child to always remain a child? If a mother bird doesn't let it's young spread their wings and leave the nest, then well, birds wouldn't be able to learn how to fly would they? And when it applies to migratory birds, those little ones wouldn't be able to stand up for themselves in self-preserverence. Besides, birds just don't spread their wings and voila ! they're expert pilots. No, they fall, they pick themselves up again, and they try, over and over and over again. It's disheartening to watch, but I think it's that little thing we so loosely term 'growing up'.

Of course, I understand how tough it can be at times. Time sure flies sometimes doesn't it? I've heard parents sighing when their 'little monsters' race around madly, biting each other, screaming and kicking and they'd shake their heads and go, " I just can't wait for you to grow up"..On the other hand, I think more often than not, parents look at their little ones and they think "Boy, I wish time would stop right now, and you stay like this for some time. " And before you know it, those little toddlers who used to drag their tiny little feet, dragging their favourite toy of the moment in their wake, are replaced by moody teenagers, dragging their feet along as you bellow at them to clean up their rooms or make their beds. Then, before you realise it, those same rebellious teens shrug off their indifference, and regale you with hopes, dreams and aspirations to become doctors, engineers, designers, pilots and every other thing imaginable that'll moist proud mamas' eyes even as they realise that no more would they be able to continue on this journey with their kids. It's when they know that 'letting go' is the next big step they'd have to brave.

Seriously though, I think that the whole letting go thing has been implemented gradually. When a baby first learns to walk, that's the first part of letting go. It's that urge of wanting to rush forward and clasp his tiny little fist everytime he falls. But you know you have to let go and let him pick himself up and learn. It's that first step he takes into nursery and he clings onto your legs, but no matter how heart-wrenching it may be, you pry his little fingers off, and let go. Now, he's asking to go off and make a man of himself, and you let go, let go even as you try to blink away those incipient tears.

There's this saying that goes round, you'll never know how your parents feel until you have kids of your own. Well, that's a long way in coming for me, but personally, I think I can quite imagine. Still, I myself have been guilty of first degree obstinance and rebellion. In self-defense, I'd reiterate by saying, all part and parcel of growing up. But I do wonder how it feels like on the other side of the line. The receiving end of it.

Anyway, this post has been a mumbo-jumbo of mixed topics. So, picking up from where I was before I digressed, I think it's undeniable that letting go is indeed a tear-jerking event. But, thank God for modern day technology, it's easy for parents to keep in touch with their kids. People can be separated by miles and miles of sea and land but yet, with a few wires, a few techie aplliances and it's as if they're already in the same room. Wonder how our ancestors got by. But then again, in those days kids probably didn't travel any further than the next town. With that, I think I'd end this post.

1 comment:

Maverick said...

Man, I wish my mom read this. Bet she'd feel touched, especially the way you put it... letting go. Next thing you know, it'll be our turn to learn, eh?

~verus rara avis~