“Parents rarely let go of their children, so children let go of them. They move on. They move away. The moments that used to define them are covered by moments of their own accomplishments. It is not until much later, that children understand; their stories and all their accomplishments, sit atop the stories of their mothers and fathers, stones upon stones, beneath the water of their lives.” ― Paulo Coelho
My children are adults. I forget that but I won’t apologize for sometimes treating them like kids because, here is the thing, they are still my babies. If I live to be 100 years old and they are 70, guess what, they are still my babies though at that point in my life they will probably be the ones wiping the food off my mouth. I don’t like the way they drive, to fast and to close. I don’t like how late they stay out or how late it is when they get started to go out. I don’t understand Uber, but if it is safer than driving home after too many beers I am all for it, I still don’t understand it. I carry cash and give them a $20 whenever I see them because a debit card won’t solve all of the world’s problems.
My role as a Dad has gone from the fixer to the tell me how to get it fixed. I still get the occasional “What should I do” calls, but as time passes by I get fewer and fewer of them. I realize you learn by doing. Sometimes you get it right sometimes you get it wrong but there is a lesson in each action. What wisdom I have has been gained from living. Interacting with good people and bad, doing stuff I like and stuff I had hated. When my children were little I navigated those storms for them. What you hope happens is that they were watching and learning. Fortunately for me, mine were.
I have loosened my grip, the rope now glides through my fingers but I am happy to grab a handful when asked. Yes I will still tell them to slow down, get your oil changed and that the credit limit on your Visa is just a number not a goal to achieve. I will also tell them I love them, how proud I am of them and that being their Dad is, by far, the best job in the world.
“Good parents give their children Roots and Wings. Roots to know where home is, Wings to fly away and exercise what’s been taught them.” – Dr. Jonas Salk