I am a very cautious person by nature. I consider all the options before plunging into big purchases and job changes. It is one of my qualities that drove my ex-husband absolutely insane. “Why can’t you just make a decision without thinking it through to the nth degree?” he would yell, followed by him muttering and shaking his head. I would just usually shriek back that it just was who I was, and to stop interrupting my google searches. This highly effective method of communication is probably one of the reasons we are not married anymore. But me protesting that being a turtle when it came down to moving forward on things was due to it “being my nature” was only partly true. The bigger reason is fear. Fear of making a bad decision, and the catastrophic consequences and humiliation that often accompanies the wrong choices. I wasn’t a turtle, more like a big chicken.
This fear has been my shadow lately. My oldest son is moving in with his dad next week. It has been a rough fourteenth year with him chafing at every limit and rule that his newly minted teenage self requires to keep him alive. Many nights Adam and I have gone toe to toe, and considering he wears a size fourteen shoe, that is saying something! He believes he is indestructible and I simply worry and care too much. Sorry, but it goes with the mom territory, so basically it’s my job to try my best to deliver you into the world (again) in your semi-adult form with as little damage as possible. And I know it is his job as a teenage boy to fight me every step of the way.
I fear that I could have done more for him, that maybe it would be better to have him here in my house, fighting tooth and nail, rather than let him go. But that is just the fear talking. I know if I want to preserve our relationship past the rough waters of his teenage years, that this is what is best for him. He needs to bond with his dad and learn from him what it means to be a man. And I will have, for the moment, replaced the fear with faith that sometimes what feels like the wrong choice squawking “the sky is falling” may actually turn out okay in the end. I think we will have chicken for dinner tonight …