I won't lie. One of my favorite things about homeschooling my children is that I don't have to let them go as much. I have at least a bit more of a sense of control over things even if the control isn't real. This past summer, at the encouragement of a few friends from church and the excitement from Kayd after reading the brochure, we allowed Kayden to attend a Christian day camp for a week. He had several friends from church in his little group and he had a blast. He went in the morning and came home for dinner at night. The last night the campers had the option to spend the night to get a taste of what overnight camp is like and we let him do that too.
Kayd had a blast. He loved it and is still bummed that not having two vehicles means that he won't be able to go this summer. However, I received a brochure for a one night overnight winter camp. For some reason I thought it was a great idea to let him go. The timing worked out to get him there and pick him up on time and I know he'll have a lot of fun.
But it's so very hard to let go. If his socks get wet will he remember to change them? Will he remember to wear his hat and dry mittens every time they do an outdoor activity? I won't be there to remind him. I won't be there to check on him. And it occurred to me yesterday that I don't actually know any of the adults who will be responsible for my child for a 14hr period of time from tonight until tomorrow night. Panic began to set in.
And then I prayed. Because really even though I feel like I have some sense of control in my home, it's mostly an illusion. God, really, is in control and He is with Kayd whether Kayd is under this roof or the roof of the camp chapel. I think that letting go is one of the hardest parts of parenting but it's also essential. Kayd's confidence grew leaps and bounds when I let go last summer and I trust that he will have a great experience this weekend too that will grow him into what I hope is a strong, independent, and responsible person. So much of our job as parents is to prepare our children for the final letting go. Oh what a heart wrenching job this can be. But for today I will let him go for one overnight and fun filled day tomorrow. One small letting go opportunity at a time will hopefully prepare my heart for the final letting go when he's ready to go out on his own which I know will happen all too soon. God will have to help when it's time to really let go.