Letting Go

3 comments Posted on May 26, 2016

Sarah Sundinby Sarah Sundin

This week, I watched our youngest son play his last high school tennis game. Three children. Five sports. Countless games. And that was the last one.

Next week, he’ll graduate from high school and this summer he’ll ship out for Navy boot camp. This is what we raised him for—to become a productive and upstanding member of society. This is what’s best for him—to become mature and independent.

But it requires letting go. It means I won’t see his smile and hear his voice every day. It means his peaceful, funny presence will be missing in our home. It means we’ll look for a table for two at a restaurant rather than a table for five.

Anchor in the StormThe entire process of raising a child is one long sequence of letting go. From that first painful push into light and air when we say, “Now you have to breathe on your own,” we let go and move them toward independence. We teach them to feed themselves and dress themselves. We teach them to read and to cross a street and to drive. We celebrate each success and grieve a little at what we’ve lost—the nursing baby, a chubby little hand in ours, soccer goals and dirty jerseys.

My son is leaving home, but I am glad. Only when I let go can he set sail.

Sarah Sundin is the author of eight historical novels, including Anchor in the Storm. Her novella in Where Treetops Glisten was a 2015 Carol Award finalist. A mother of three, Sarah lives in California, and works on-call as a hospital pharmacist. Please visit her at www.sarahsundin.com, facebook.com/SarahSundinAuthor, and twitter.com/sarahsundin.


  • 05/26/2016
    Jane Tucker said:

    Your thoughts mirror mine as my middle child graduated two weeks ago. We have one more boy at home, but the push for independence has already begun with him. I love my young adults, and I like them. The pain is in the letting go.
    I’m so glad I read this today.

  • 05/26/2016
    Lai Woudstra said:

    Well said, Sarah. We know we did our jobs well when we have to let go and let them be who God designed them to be. Welcome to the next phase -Empty-Nesting!

  • 05/26/2016
    Debrah Nash said:

    The hardest thing I ever did was “let go”! I watched each of our children choose to make decisions that would be part of a new life for them. By far, the hardest was dropping my son off at the recruiting office for the United States Army to go to Boot Camp! Because of his choice he did a tour of duty in Iraq the first year of the war. I thank my loving God that he came back home to us, his wife and two little girls, one of whom he had not seen yet. He was changed in many ways. Some good, some not so good, except he knew he wanted to be a nurse after serving as a Line Medic. He is now a man who loves what he does and his family as well as understanding the Calling he found in the Army. Your youngest will do well because you have prepared him! He will be in my prayers!


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