Trusting More, Fixing Less
In 2018, my two daughters were married within four months of each other. When I tell people this, their first response is usually a gasp! Although it was busy (and a tad expensive!), it was a happy time for all of us. God brought along godly husbands for both of my daughters, and as they began their lives as married couples, this mother’s heart was rejoicing.
Since then, I have learned that the relationship with adult children can bring its own set of challenges. For me, these challenges probably better translate into “I am no longer the fixer.” Admittedly, I have always been a fixer, especially with my daughters. Whether it was an issue at school or with a playmate, I was often the one to swoop in and make it all better. As the girls grew older, I worked harder to help them make the right choices and solve their own problems by reflecting a Spirit of Christ. Kindness was always a big word in our house, especially when bullies were hurtful or friends betrayed. But in the end, I was still there, wiping tears and doing all I could to help heal the wounds, just like a mother should.
As our children grow up and spread their wings, we let go, little by little, day by day. For me, when they both married, that seemed to be the final release. At that moment, our relationships changed. It was nothing bad, just different.
I have learned that although there may be small things that I can do to help, my role in the lives of my daughters is no longer to be a fixer. I can be an example, an encourager, a cheerleader, a confidante, a friend, but the absolute best thing I can ever do is to entrust them to the care of the Father and His plan for their lives. Pray, not fear. Trust, not fix.
I recently saw the title of a book about adult parenting which made me laugh out loud. It was called “Keep Your Mouth Shut and the Welcome Mat Out.” This reflects adult parenting more realistically than we would like to think! Yet if I wrote a book on adult parenting, I think the title would be this.
“Trust and Then Trust a Little More.”
And as my children continue to navigate through both the big and small things of life, my prayer for them would be only this:
My son [or daughter], do not forget my teaching, but let your heart keep my commandments, for length of days and years of life and peace they will add to you. Let not steadfast love and faithfulness forsake you; bind them around your neck; write them on the tablet of your heart. So you will find favor and good success in the sight of God and man. Trust in the Lord with all your heart and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths. Be not wise in your own eyes; fear the Lord, and turn away from evil. It will be healing to your flesh and refreshment to your bones.” Proverbs 3:1-8