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I love you, but no

The universe gifted me with a call from Nick last night. It was bittersweet for sure. He’s homesick, feels he’s completed his experience with Nols Education and wants to come home.

I have to give it to him; How he (and this is a skill I’ve witnessed him use many times over the years) convinced his guides to let him call home from some remote place somewhere in Baja is beyond me. There is suppose to be zero contact with the outside world for 90 days. He never ceases to amaze me with his charm.

Over the course of the last 30 days, I’ve been practicing emotional and thought management, witnessing the feelings in my body and observing the thoughts as they arrive -allowing it all. Talk about work.

This last week it hit me- I’ve had a codependent relationship with my kids and have been parenting from a place of trauma:

The way I choose to worry and consume myself with fearful story telling when they walk out the door.

The way I micromanage their lives rather than deal with and look at my own.

The amount of energy I spend checking in and being available at the drop of a hat.

How my decision making is so black and white because ‘what if?’

Some of this is mothering, some of it’s not.

With some distance and space I’m able to see the behavior and pattern clearly.

When I found out yesterday that I’d be hearing from him I had to prepare myself. As much as I wanted to say, ‘whatever you want, I’ll take care of it’ I knew that the best thing for him and myself was the opposite.  

The minute I heard his voice, I was overwhelmed with emotion – and vice versa. We both started crying.

After our exchange of hysterical “I love you, no I love you’s”,

he said,

‘I know you’ve raised me to finish what I’ve started. I’ve learned what I need to and I’m done.’

It was actually a page long entry-plea that he had written and outlined explaining exactly why he felt justified and ready to come home. Again, I had to give it to him… he’s good.

Really good.

I said, ‘I love you, but no.

This is where you grow.

This is where your journey begins.

You have a choice to look around daily and choose to see the suck or choose to see the great.

The option to come home early is not one. Surrender to the experience and allow it to consume you until you’re ready to release it. I’m doing the same thing. Know this.’

He said okay. and then we cried some more. He asked about his sister, Pinkus, and the general population. He literally said, “How’s everyone’s health? Is everyone doing okay?”

He felt the need to make some final requests before we hung up- again, my brain took me back to its og fearful state; my son is off fighting a war and we have just a few moments before we lose connection. Hear him. Listen closely. Say I love you as much as possible as this could be it! He is off saving the world for a better tomorrow. Take notes…

He told me to tell Pink to listen to ;Trying to find balance’ by Atmosphere and to think of him.

He asked me to ask Faith to watch all the Harry Potter movies before he gets home.

Lastly he said, and you mom. I have so much to tell you, but right now I want you to know that you were right… he started to cry again. I was bracing myself, trying to choke back my tears. He said, I’ve been journaling and reading everyday and I actually like it. And he burst into tears. Okay we both did.

These redeeming parental moments… you never know when you get them, but fuck all. That fight we had the day before he left where I was insistent that he take a pen, journal and book and he was equally insistent that he doesn’t read or write and my final ‘you are taking the pen and paper and book because I swear to god, after weeks of nothing but wilderness activities, you will want to do anything but sit in the woods on your chair and think about life. Take the damn pen and paper and book and stop talking to me.’

The glory of it all.

It’s a privilege for sure ❤️

My brain snapped back to reality quite quickly from the ‘my son is off fighting a war and saving the world’ to:

This was what we needed… what I needed. His voice and the opportunity to evolve.

To be able to acknowledge 2 things;

1. I’m so fucking lucky I get to feel all these feelings. 2. He’s not off fighting at war, Brain. Nice try.

Let’s try to get more creative next time.

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