Just a few weeks ago I shared this image of my grandson in a post about refocusing. I have found that for me this is a favorite image, not just because it includes the Cutest Grandson in My World, but because of what he was doing and what we were doing when I took this. The Grandson was walking away from us, toward a new playground...new to him, testing his area of exploration, making sure that we were not far away, as we all kept a watchful eye on him.
I love that little foot lifted up, ready for the next step, the toy in his left hand, the cap on his head, that cute little diaper butt in blue jeans, and the set of his shoulders - ready to take on the world.
At the same time, there is a very bitter sweet moment of realization that he is growing up and moving on, becoming independent, learning about this wide, wonderful, sometimes dangerous but often amazing world. Those thoughts were mine as I watched our son and daughter grow, and to find them coming back in my life as a Grandmother was quite an experience.
Long ago I clipped an article from the newspaper, perhaps it was an Ann Landers column, that spoke of parenting. Kahil Gibran was quoted in this article, and the main idea of what he said has never left me, that our children are like "arrows you send forth...". I leave you with his words.
Your children are not your children.
They are the sons and daughters of Life's longing for itself.
They come through you but not from you,
And though they are with you yet they belong not to you.
You may give them your love but not your thoughts,
For they have their own thoughts.
You may house their bodies but not their souls,
For their souls dwell in the house of tomorrow,
which you cannot visit, not even in your dreams.
You may strive to be like them,
but seek not to make them like you.
For life goes not backward nor tarries with yesterday.
You are the bows from which your children
as living arrows are sent forth.
The archer sees the mark upon the path of the infinite,
and He bends you with His might
that His arrows may go swift and far.
Let your bending in the archer's hand be for gladness;
For even as He loves the arrow that flies,
so He loves also the bow that is stable.