"Entrust your loved ones to me; release them into My protective care. They are much safer with Me than in your clinging hands." -Sarah Young Jesus Calling
Several weeks ago, the reality began to set in that kindergarten was quickly approaching for Brayden. My tears had already begun to flow, and it was clear that my husband was completely oblivious to the fact that this process might be very difficult for me. Starting school is such a huge milestone for moms, and kids, of course, and I know I am not the only one who struggles with letting go.
As I attempted to explain my feelings to my husband, I thought they arose from a sense of needing to protect Brayden, and that somehow by being with him all day I was doing that. Then I realized it wasn't that I was ever able to really protect him from everything but that it was the "being there" that I will miss most. Being there to be excited with him when he learns something new or to laugh with him when he says something hilarious. Being there to hug him and comfort him at the first moment he feels sick or sad and even being the one to discipline when he does something wrong. Someone else will be there instead of me, and from now on I will miss a portion of his life each day.
I asked The Lord to give me this boy, and he has granted my request. Now I am giving him to The Lord, and he will belong to The Lord his whole life. -1 Samuel 1:27-28
Most kids have already had a year or 2 of school at this point, and Brayden spent the first day of preschool last year in the ER with dehydration from Cyclic Vomiting Syndrome, which he still continues to struggle with. So, it was very obvious to me that we needed to keep him home an extra year, and I treasure every moment we had together. We enjoyed spontaneous day trips when he felt good, extra cuddle time when he was sick, and lots of crazy playtime in the house during the long winter. And, of course, the countless hours playing with his little brother, Blakey, were so special. This past year has been a gift.
Truly Brayden's whole life has been a gift even before he was born, and throughout his short life, he has faced many struggles. We had longed for a baby for many years before we found a wonderful fertility doctor in Florida who diagnosed and treated me for endometriosis which brought Brayden into our lives a year later. Several years after that, and a cross country move, Brayden battled a severe case of ITP, and we were so grateful that God spared his life after his platelet count bottomed out. And, as I said, the current struggle with vomiting is less severe, but it often keeps him from being able to be a part of activities that other kids are involved in.
All of these life events seemed to flash before my eyes as Ben and I sat through parent orientation the other night as the principal explained the complex pick-up and drop-off instructions. Tomorrow morning I will be the one shedding many tears behind my aviators, but I know I will be entrusting my son to the One who can care for him far better than I ever could.
Love you, Brayden, to the moon and back!