As many of you know my daughter Mackenzie is a beautiful ballerina. Her dream is to become a Prima. With her work ethic, talent, and love for ballet, I know deep in my soul she will achieve her goal. But with achieving this goal comes sacrifice and hard work. So this morning Dave and I dropped her off for a 3 week summer ballet intensive at the prestigious Rock School of Ballet in Pennsylvania.
For some reason this summer hit me a lot harder than when she spent last summer in Vermont. Maybe because last summer we could visit on the weekends and this summer we can’t, maybe because this is just the beginning of letting our little bird spread her wings and fly alone without us, or maybe it’s just because time doesn’t stand still and the last 15 years have flown by. Maybe it’s for all those reasons and sometimes it’s not about having the strength to hold on tight, it’s about having the courage to let go.
For so long it’s been the three musketeers, (and of course it still will be) but as she opens those wings a bit more, I can already see how far she will soar. Her dreams will take her world wide and as exciting as this is, the fear sets in for the world we live in, and the things we worry about as a parent. Number 1, her safety. I can only hope the tools and knowledge we have given her will stay with her in times of need and that she knows our love goes with her where ever she may be. I swear parenthood is the scariest hood. Never mind a rough neighborhood, be a parent, and monsters under the bed become insignificant compared to letting them out on their own. Nothing brings more elated joy or paralyzing fear. Nothing is is so wonderful and daunting, heart-breaking and soul lifting, taxing and exhilarating as raising a child. And certainly nothing will stretch us, inspire us, and motivate us to better ourselves quite like being the one that little person looks up to.
As sad and nervous as I am today, I am basking in the accomplishment, to raise a child who is comfortable enough to be on her own, means we’ve done our job. To raise a child, confident in her decisions and confident in the amazing young lady she is, we have done our job. So soar little birdie soar, we will be here always behind you to guide you and be your biggest cheerleader.
There is no such thing as being a perfect parent but there are millions of ways to be a really great one. It starts with love, and we couldn’t love you more, Mackenzie Anna.