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Fly, Baby, Fly – and Dance Your Dance | Mary Biever | One Writing Mother

Fly, Baby, Fly – and Dance Your Dance

When my children were babies, I carried them in my arms onto the dance floor of life. In those moments of holding them and feeling the waves of music, I swayed to the beat and hoped our moments together would last forever. Often, they would nod to sleep in my arms and nap to awaken with more energy.

The time came when they learned to crawl, and then stand, and then walk. Then, I held their hand, took them to the dance floor and began to show them basic building blocks for the dance. Sometimes they wobbled and occasionally, they stumbled.  But I was there to catch them, cheer their victories, and help them stand back up after they stumbled. Often, I got to choose the music and their dance partners as I worked to give them the best dance training possible.

As they grew older, others began to show them dance steps I didn’t know. I was still there, right on the sidelines, often organizing the rules of the dance and keeping the show running. That’s what moms are for, isn’t it?

Advance a few years. They choose their own dances and show they have more stamina than I do. The time comes when they want to choose not only how they dance but where. And they don’t want mama or daddy organizing the outskirts of the dance floor, ready to rescue them at the first sign of trouble. They recognize role models – both good and bad. Except now they are old enough to discern the difference and use bad role models as people not to emulate.

I’m at that place now where I see my kids who are no longer kids – they are starting their own dances. We raised them to fully engage in the dance of life, and that’s what they are doing. On their terms. In their own ways. If I try to grab them now and force them to dance just like me, where I tell them to go, I’m trying to take away their free will.

Not that that would work – they are too independent for me to try to manipulate. And I respect them too much to try.

They will encounter problems and challenges just like we did. Drawing on their past experiences and training, they will decide how to handle them. It’s no longer up to me to set the rules, choose the music, or solve the problems. They will make their own moves.

We can still sit on the sidelines and sometimes pass the popcorn. At times, I’ll tell them, “Fly, ┬ábaby, fly.”

And in doing so, I continue my own dance of life. Watching theirs and celebrating who they have become.

2 Responses to “Fly, Baby, Fly – and Dance Your Dance”

  1. Nancy Griffin November 25, 2012 at 10:38 am #

    Oh Mary, you have brought a tear to my eye with this one! You know I can relate to what you are saying here having started the process of emptying the nest in 2009.

    Very nice writing and relating. Keep up the good work!

    • Dolly March 9, 2017 at 2:30 am #

      All of my questions sethned-ttalks!

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