I created this blog 2 months ago, a few days before my daughter stepped into her new life, and left to join the Navy. Life has been in a state of flux for all of us with my family here. It has been my experience that anytime big changes are being made in a life, chaos reigns for a time, especially in my family where change is viewed more like an enemy than anything good. There is always an adjustment period. A time where the old ways must be let go, and the new is embraced. Persistence and patience are needed during that time, with self and others, because there is always that part of us that desires to stay put.
I supported my daughter's decision to join the Navy. I know just how hard it was for her to even come to that place of decisive action. She took a great risk making it, in more ways than can be said. Change will always bring with it a ripple effect, and will reach out and touch those closest to the person enacting the change. It has been no different for the people here in this household. I told my daughter I would be here for her, it is one of the main reasons I moved back here. She needed me here so she could do this thing, and know that all was well on the home front. She worried what her decision would do to others left behind, and knew that I would ensure, as much as I could, a smooth transition from the old to the new. She had good reason to be worried, and I needed to be here.
For me personally, my daughter's decision, and her courage to follow a dream, and to walk through the open door provided, gave me the courage I needed as well to begin my own. The first steps are always the hardest, but I have learned to wait as I wade through the chaos after taking a leap of faith. I'm okay with the mess that ensues. Its just a part of it. My blog, in the last couple of months, has reflected that chaos. I have been waiting as the nerves settled, as I settled, into a decision made to step into a dream and begin its manifestation. I have walked through doubt, regret, fear, you name it, and through it all have remained steady in my practice. I have no idea whatsoever where it will lead me. I'm okay with that too.
I recall giving birth to my daughter. While in labor I went through the same doubts, the same chaos, before she was finally in my arms, and all within me settled as I looked at my daughter's little face for the very first time. It was good. But during labor I changed my mind a hundred times, decided I can't do it, questioned my sanity for even thinking I could, new I wasn't equipped at all to handle a baby, much less take care of one. Of course, we can't change our mind in that stage of the game, and I remember feeling like a cornered animal. Oh shit, what have I done?? Meanwhile, contractions are coming faster, the ball is already rolling from a decision enacted months ago, and now I must sleep in this stupid bed I made, whether its right or wrong, good or bad, or fits my feet. Then I saw her face....and fell in love. Suddenly, I didn't care that I didn't know where it would lead me, or if I could do it or not. And I must say here, now that I have perspective, that my love for her is the thing that got me through every step with her to this point. My love for her has been my greatest teacher. We will do anything, walk through anything, for those we love.
It is no different for a dream. There is the gestation period, and then there is the labor, and then its here. The labor is what I've been walking through the last couple of months. The labor is what my daughter, and the rest of my family has been walking through as well. Where's an epidural when you need one?
My daughter graduates from boot camp this Friday. The letters I have received from her these past two months have reflected everything I have discussed here. She has wanted to change her mind a hundred times, she has walked through all of it. I have sent her letters of encouragement. I have not known, just as she herself didn't know, if she would make it. We've been waiting, and walking through it. The last letter I got from her she said this:
"I feel a little better now, not so much pain in my heart. I realize I have never been by myself, having to fend for myself. I thought I was pretty independent and nothing could phase me, and I realized I wasn't. I have always had a crutch to lean on. I have always had someone there. My perception of myself was oober wrong. But I now know I can be on my own, and fend for myself without anyone. Although it still sucks! I've learned a lot about myself here, and how my confidence wasn't all there. It's like I didn't trust myself to be alone. I love your letters to me, they make me feel good, and look at things with another view. I am sorry for never reading what you write, or listening. I think I would be very interested in what you write now. Yay for open mindedness! Thanks again for your words of wisdom, you have no clue how much its helped. I want to go back to the known, but I want the new stuff more! Find out what I'm made of.."
I cannot even express in these tiny symbols for words how proud I am of my daughter, and I can't wait to see her this Friday and look in her eyes and tell her so. She is more an inspiration to me than she will ever know. I didn't know that while I was giving her what I myself needed, she would return it with her own little words of encouragement. Did I mention she inspires me? Her words gave me what I needed to continue on with my dream, my decision, as well.
We're on our way...and it is good.