As mothers we are wired to protect our children. From smallest of bumps and bruises, to biggest of pains and hurt. But unless I can promise to be omnipresent and omnipotent in their lives, I rather have my kids experience some pains sooner than later, in the hope that the subsequent learnings obliterate the need for protection altogether.
Pain of failing – We all have heard of it’s merits. Frequently cited, ‘you learn from your mistakes and failures’. While often true and important, many a times you just DON’T and end up REPEATING them, but THAT IS OK.
My hope is that my kids reach the stage of nonchalance where failures are concerned. Rather, they put their heart and soul into the only thing which is in their control, TRYING. The only way to get there is through failing often and enough.
Pain of being unknown – I grew up in a small town and quite literally lived “where everybody knows my name” life. So, when I went to college, to a city far away from home and for the first time had to introduce myself to a group of strangers, I was very uncomfortable. It was an unused skill.
Thankfully, it didn’t deter me from stretching my wings. Over time, after having moved to a new country and lived in a number of cities, I learnt to get out of my comfort zone. And boy, am I grateful!
Today, new things, people and adventures don’t intimidate me, but truly excite me. I have met some amazing people and experienced things I could never imagine, only because I left my ‘known’ territory.
Pain of a heartbreak – Currently, my kids are way too young for any love interest heartbreaks. But, when they do get to those (scary) years (God help me then), I hope they go through pain of a breakup or two before finding their ONE.
I clench by the mere thought, I know it will be hurtful. We have all been there. The sadness, the “oh the world will come to an end” feeling, the “why me?” question.
But, aren’t we all glad we went through those heartbreaks? I know, I am. I value who I ended up with, so much more, because of those experiences and how they shaped me.
I know well that these growing pains will be hard. I will stumble on many occasions, rush to my kids’ rescue faster than needed, and cry far more than our combined share. But then again, who said as mothers we are done growing up?!