Saturday, June 9, 2012

Letting Go, The One Scary Thing

Donna at Funky Junk Interiors has challenged us to move past our fears and to do or make a start on one thing that scares us.  I think she was referring to those scary home projects or business ideas that frighten us, that we put off because they seem too challenging.  And while I have plenty of those to get past--picking a color to paint my front door, sorting through and getting rid of basement clutter (it is terrifying down there!), I wanted to share the hardest thing I have ever done, the thing that puts all of those other "scary things" in perspective: letting go. 
Today would have been my son Mason's 12th birthday.  Mason was born with a severe and rare heart defect.  We knew at 20 weeks of pregnancy that his heart had not developed normally and that he would be a high risk pregnancy and birth.  We knew his chances of surviving to birth and beyond were slim, but we had hope.  We believe in miracles and we are positive thinkers, always believing for the best outcome.  But, we didn't get that miracle.  Mason did survive pregnancy and was born breathing on his own--his 5 minute apgar score was 9.  But, his heart defect was even worse than they had predicted and surgery was not going to save him.  We had small glimmers of hope, his coloring was good, he didn't gasp for air, even though he had very small lungs because his big heart took up most of his chest cavity.  

After a few days, his condition worsened, he no longer was breathing on his own, he needed to be intubated.  Surgeons across the nation said surgery was impossible, Mason wouldn't survive it.  One doctor asked us if we were prolonging life or prolonging death.  This was when we knew we needed to let go--let go of the hope we had, let go of our son.  We signed a DNR and chose to take our son off of life support.  This is a decision no parent should ever have to make, but with God's grace and love, we were able to.  After six precious days, I held my son as he died.  It was hard and I wanted to die too, but knew I couldn't.  I had to go on and I did, minute by minute and day by day.

This week I had to let go again, of my eldest, 19 year old baby.  He flew across the country to see a long distance girlfriend.  My eldest graduated from high school a year ago, and this past year has not been an easy one.  He has made some bad choices, has struggled to know what he wants and to define who he is.  And I have been holding on tightly--holding on to my dreams for him, holding on to the little boy.  But, as I drove away from the airport, I was filled with a sense of peace.  I feel like I have finally let go, believe he will be okay, will figure it.  He is an amazing young man and I know he will find his path, not mine, but his, as it should be.  

So, my scary thing is maybe not what Donna was thinking of when she posted this challenge, but letting go, doing the hardest thing a mom could ever do makes all of the other things easy.  It makes facing a challenge in decor or business doable because I know with God I can do anything, even the impossible.  Find more stories of facing the scary in our lives at Funky Junk Interiors.


20 comments:

  1. I am sorry for you sadness...I can't even imagine losing a child.

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  2. A beautiful testimonial of trusting God.

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  3. Such a heart warming post. So aorry about your baby Mason. So ironic as I have been asking followers to pray for a bloggy friend's grandson. He was expected to have lung and heart problems. He was born yesterday. They are doing surgery in a couple of days. He has a large hole in his heart. I feel so bad for anyone having to go through this.
    I am a mom of 4.....now adults. It is so hard to let go. I lve that you felt peace about your son. My daughter started college then moved away to Colorado to find herself. We let her go and never dreamed that later she would earn her masters in psychology and be a counselor in a middle school. Miracles happen. Sorry to compare these stories with yours. Everyone is different but sometimes it helps to hear what others have accomplished. Many ((((((HUGS))))) your way today.

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  4. Becky your story was inspirational... I'm so sorry for the loss of your baby and I do know that letting go of your children is hard. It is true, sometimes our dreams for them are not their dreams. All you can do is know that you did your best for him, taught him what he needs to know and how to be a good person and the rest is up to him.
    Where he came from will always guide him.
    Susan
    Homeroad

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  5. Oh Becky. I can't pretend to know what it's like to lose a child and my heart goes out to you for your loss. I too have a 19 year old who is making his way in life and I am learning how to let the young man we raised to be a strong and independent person, actually BE a strong and independent person. Lots of biting my tongue involved.

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  6. It's amazing how we can read a blog regularly and still not truly know the person. Thank you for sharing your story. I cannot imagine the pain you have suffered. AS for the 19 yr old, I have some experience there, and you are right. We cannot live their lives for them. You've done the best you can and now all you can do is pray and give it to God. Letting go is a good thing and you are doing it right.

    thank you for sharing,
    Margo

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  7. I'm sorry for your losses. Life is hard... I understand these pains you've had and can say that you have done your job, you have given your children to the Lord, you try to honor God, and you stay positive. There's really nothing else you can do. I'm in the midst of having one of my kids make choices that aren't going to make his or our lives easier, but it is his right to choose and my right to love him no matter what. I am at peace with this, too. God bless you and your family. You're doing GREAT!!

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  8. Having lost your baby boy must make it so much harder to let go of your eldest. When my youngest daughter was a young adult, and making bad choices, I lived in constant fear. My nephew had not survived his bad choices. I swallowed my fear and let her find her way. Now, she is a stable, married, hard working mom. Have faith!

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  9. I just can not imagine the pain of letting go
    as you did with Mason and I'm truly sorry
    you had to endure such a thing...
    Letting of of your children to the world is
    something I've done 3 times.. Putting my boy
    on a plane when he joined the USCG at the age
    of 18, well that was 20 years ago and he is
    now an officer living in Alaska.. I'm still
    feeling his being gone from me..
    My two girls left home as young women and that
    was also as hard but I'm happy to say they both
    have very happy lives...
    Great Post and yes, it is and was scarey.
    Sandy

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  10. What a heart warming story. So Sorry for your Loss. My thoughts and Prayers are with you on Mason's Birthday and always. Thanks for sharing your story.

    sandraallen260@centurytel.net

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  11. Thank you for sharing your post! I can't even begin to imagine losing a child and the strength that it takes to live through that. My heart breaks for any parent that has to go through that. I thought that you might like to read smallbirdstudios.com She writes about the loss of her daughter and has started an online magazine called still standing. The website is stillstandingmag.com. Where families talk about living through the loss of a child and infertility. My daughter was premature and 2 pounds and just the unknowns were so hard. I'm so blessed that she is healthy. Thank you again for sharing and my thoughts are with you on masons birthday

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  12. Wow! I definitely know what you're going through. I also have a 19 year old son and he also is flying (Monday morning) to see a long distance girlfriend. He was a twin but I lost his twin during the pregnancy, so never got to hold him, but I felt the loss. I'm so sorry for your heavy heart. Just believe he will be successful and move on to make better choices. I'm sending you good juju.
    http://kamsmomusa.blogspot.com/

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  13. Your story is so heart-felt, sad, but also uplifting. My grandmother said that the hardest part of parent is just stopping. Now that mine are out in the world, married, and parents themselves I truly understand what she meant. We know that the world isn't going to love them the way we love them but that's why God made us their parents - to give them roots and wings. Mason will always be your child, just in a different place. Thanks for sharing your story.

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  14. I hope with all my heart that I never have to face your first scary thing...but my children are growing up too quickly, and I know the second one will be coming before I know it. You are handling it with grace and courage...I hope I do as well!

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  15. What a challenging week you have had Becky. I've always known you have someone waiting in Heaven, but I didn't know the circumstances. Thank you for sharing Mason's story with us.
    It is hard to let go, as parents, when our children fly off, it's because we've done our job. It's not easy...jamie flew off 12 years ago, and I miss her terribly still.
    I wish your son the best of luck as he ventures out into this big ole world to find himself. I hope he finds that there's no place like home. :) (eventually)
    lots of love to ya girl!
    gail

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  16. Thank you for sharing your heart. The loss of your sweet baby and your feelings that you held during those hours. Made my heart ache. Then having the courage to do it again with your oldest-in letting go of your thoughts and dreams and ideas for him. But you are so right in letting him go. I hope that I can remember this with my son. Something like this is so hard to do. Knowing that he is in Gods hands gives us that peace but it doesn't make it easy.

    @ 3Beeze Homestead

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  17. Wow. Just wow.

    First off, my intent for the scary challenge was much more than a DIY project. I wanted to see some life changing things happen for others because so many of us are held back by fear.

    I'd say your scary challenge fit right in. Perfectly.

    Thank-you for sharing and may each day bring you closer to true peace within. xo

    Donna

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  18. Becky, this is so touching. The loss of your baby boy is so heart wrenching. Thank you for sharing this and reminding me that as you said, 'with God, anything is possible. Blessings to your older son as he begins a new chapter of his life. God bless:)
    XO, Barbara
    http://chase-thestar.blogspot.com/

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  19. I can't imagine going through the loss of a baby, my heart breaks for you. Your post is wonderfully written and makes the point that we never know what others are going through. Some of us have very difficult things to go through. Wishing you peace as you carry on.

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Thanks so much for taking the time to comment, I really appreciate your kind words!