Gifts for Mom, Grandparents, Besties and YOU🎄 ➔

The sweet sound of your baby’s cry pierces the air inside the delivery room. He is laid upon your chest, and as you gaze down at his delicate features you think to yourself, “I will never let you go.”

All too soon, your babe is taken from your arms to be examined, weighed, and measured. And in that moment, you learn your first lesson of motherhood:

Letting go is never easy, but sometimes it must be done.

Your 11-month-old pulls himself up on the coffee table. You reach out to steady his wobbly body, catching him before he crashes to the floor. But you know in order to learn to walk, he must take those first steps on his own. So you drop your hands to your sides and resist the urge to grab him when his little hand lifts away from the table.

Letting go is never easy, but sometimes it must be done.

Your toddler is well past middle-of-the-night feedings and being rocked to sleep. He now fills up most of your lap when you read him a story, and you notice that his hands aren’t quite as chubby as they used to be. You long ago traded the infant carrier for a regular car seat. As you pack up the last of the baby items and take apart the crib to make room for a big boy bed, you are flooded with emotion. Your heart grieves as this stage of motherhood comes to an end.

Letting go is never easy, but sometimes it must be done.

Your preschooler looks up at you with big eyes and grabs your leg as you walk into his new classroom for the first time. Even though you have been looking forward to finally having a few hours to yourself, your mind can’t comprehend how you have arrived at this place so soon. You give him an extra-long hug and then linger a few moments at the door, fighting to hold back the tears.

Letting go is never easy, but sometimes it must be done.

Your 5-year-old tugs at his backpack as he walks down the hallway toward his kindergarten classroom. He has been talking about this moment for weeks. You feel a little anxious as he takes these first steps into a world full of so many unknowns. But you greet his enthusiasm with a smile and say, “I’m so excited for you, buddy!”  

Letting go is never easy, but sometimes it must be done.

Your 11-year-old no longer wants to hug goodbye when you drop him off at school. You reach for his hand before he hops out of the car, but he pulls away. You know this is all a natural part of growing up–his evolving independence and these subtle shifts in your relationship. You still see glimpses of your little boy, but they have become few and far between.

Letting go is never easy, but sometimes it must be done.

Your 16-year-old asks for the car keys and your mind flashes back to a small boy covered in dirt, racing matchbox cars on the sidewalk and shouting, “Look how fast my cars are going, Mama!” You long for the days of matchbox cars as your teenager gives you a quick wave and drives out of sight.

Letting go is never easy, but sometimes it must be done.

Your 18-year-old stands in front of the mirror adjusting his graduation cap. You gaze over at him and can’t believe a man now stands where your little boy once stood. You close your eyes and sigh as you remember the moment he was first laid on your chest—how time stood still as your life changed forever. You wish time would stand still now as you prepare to let go once again.

It is in this act of letting go, over and over, that you have given your child a wonderful gift—a chance to grow his own set of wings.

And as you watch him take off on his next grand adventure, you will remember;

Letting go is never easy, but sometimes it must be done.

You may also like:

Dear Teenagers, Be Patient While I Let Go

Learning to Let Go and Let God

I Hold You, Baby, So You’ll Know It’s Okay to Let Go

If you liked this, you'll love our new book, SO GOD MADE A MOTHER available for pre-order now!

Pre-Order Now

Mary Ann Blair

Mary Ann Blair is a stay-at-home mom living in the Pacific Northwest with her two little gentlemen and hubs. She loves connecting with other parents who like to keep it real! Her work has been published on Her View From Home, Motherly, A Fine Parent, Perfection Pending, That’s Inappropriate, Pregnant Chicken, Sammiches and Psych Meds, Red Tricycle and in Chicken Soup For the Soul. She can be found at maryannblair.com or on Facebook at Mary Ann Blair, Writer.

Simple Moments Shape Childhood

In: Kids, Motherhood
Little boy in shallow water of beach

Sometimes it’s the little things that can turn out to be the biggest things. Motherhood has made me appreciate the everyday moments, the simple moments, differently.  Being outdoors with my boys can be simple in theory, but I absolutely love the adventures we take. Whether we are hiking, biking, swimming, exploring, or checking out a new park, this momma knows it is time well spent.  RELATED: I’m Watching You Grow Up in the Little Moments Because whether they realize it or not, these memories being made are the special ones. The ones my boys will carry with them in their...

Keep Reading

I Promise to Show Up for You

In: Kids, Motherhood
Mother and daughter in garden

My child, I hope you know you can count on this: I will show up for you. I will show up when you wake in the middle of the night, when you get up too early or stay up too late. I will be there to make your meals, read you a story, and tuck you into bed. I will show up when you are sick—taking time off work, bringing you to the doctor, cleaning up your throw-up, and sitting up with you. I will show up at every game, sitting in the stands or a camp chair, freezing or...

Keep Reading

Sometimes Growth Is Tangible, and When It Is You Hold On Tight

In: Kids, Motherhood
Mom putting bike helmet on child

I never expected my sign to come in the form of a plastic bag. As a parent, you’re told over and over how fast it all goes, to cherish these times because they’re gone in a blink. You see the gradual changes in your kids as they move through milestones. One day, they can hold their own spoon. They begin stringing words into sentences. Their ages are counted in years and no longer months. You watch these things happen every day, but I didn’t realize some transitions would come in tangible ways, like a grocery bag filled with wet swim...

Keep Reading

Some Nights They Need You a Little More

In: Kids, Motherhood
Little boy sleeping, color photo

Some nights they need you a little more, mama. Because of the bad dreams or the bogeyman they are adamant is under the bed. Because firefighter daddy’s schedule leaves him missing goodnight tuck-ins and bedtime stories several times a week, sometimes leaving them a little needier and more emotional. Some nights they need you a little more, mama. RELATED: I’ll Lay With You As Long As You Need, My Child Because they are sick. Because they feel safe in your presence. Some nights they need you a little more, mama. It’s not always easy. It’s not always (okay, hardly ever)...

Keep Reading

Sweet Babies, I’ll Be There

In: Kids, Motherhood
Two children lying in bed, color photo

When your world is calm and peaceful, I’ll be there. When your world is chaotic like an ice cream shop on the hottest day of summer, I’ll be there. When you need a Band-Aid applied and a boo-boo kissed, I’ll be there. When you want to perform in your Frozen microphone like you’re performing for a crowd of 20,000 people, I’ll be there. When you feel lost and alone, I’ll be there. When you feel you have nowhere to go, I’ll be there. RELATED: I Will Always Be There When You Need Me, My Son When you need a pep...

Keep Reading

I’m in the Big Little Years

In: Kids, Motherhood
black and white photo of little boy and little girl standing in a window together

I’m in the big little years. It’s when you’re no longer in the tender season of babies and toddlers—those sweet, smothering, exhausting years of being constantly touched and needed . . . . . . but you’re not yet in the big kid years—navigating boyfriends and driver’s licenses and bracing your heart for the impending ache of an empty nest. I’m somewhere in between. I’m in the years of having littles that aren’t so little anymore, but still need you for so much. They have big feelings. Big ideas. Big dreams. But they have mostly little problems (even though they...

Keep Reading

1-Year-Olds Are Wonderful

In: Baby, Kids, Motherhood, Toddler
1 year old baby smiling

Newborns—who doesn’t love them?  The captivating scent of a brand new baby, their fragile little bodies laying so delicately on your chest. Everything that comes with a newborn baby is just absolute magic. But have you ever had a 1-year-old? I used to think the newborn phase was my favorite, nothing could ever be better than having such a tiny helpless little human rely on you for absolutely everything. I could hold my newborn for hours, soaking in every tiny little detail before it became nothing but a beautifully distant memory. But I’ve realized it’s 1-year-olds who have a special...

Keep Reading

My Kids Are All in School Now and It’s a Little Lonely

In: Kids, Motherhood
Woman looking out window alone

I had just dropped my children off at school. All of them. My youngest has just started full-time. It was my first full day on my own since she began, and I had really been looking forward to it, so I took myself into town to do a bit of shopping and grab a coffee. Just me. The kind of days dreams are made of, right? I could suddenly breathe again.  I only had myself to answer to.  I got my latte and something to eat. And then I cried.  My eyes filled with tears as I sat in the...

Keep Reading

I Love You Even When I Say I Don’t

In: Kids, Motherhood
Mother and daughter touch foreheads

“I love you even when I say I don’t.” These words came out of nowhere from my 5-year-old. I was standing in the bathroom with her (we still don’t like to go potty without mommy standing right there), and she wouldn’t look at me while talking to me. You see, my 5-year-old and I have been in more spouts than ever before. She’s found this new attitude in her first couple months of kindergarten, coming home with new phrases including, “No, I don’t want to–you do it.” It hurts my heart, makes me frustrated, and leaves me asking myself where...

Keep Reading

Big Questions at Bedtime Don’t Require Perfect Answers

In: Kids, Motherhood
Mother and child at bedtime

Last night at bedtime, my son asked why everyone has to die one day. The thought of my sweet 7-year-old grappling with the weight of such a question hurt my heart. He looked so small tucked under a fleece blanket, clutching his favorite stuffed panda. How could the same little boy who just started second grade wearing a space backpack stuffed with bright, wide-ruled notebooks ask such a thing?  Perhaps my children are more aware of the inevitability of death than other kids their age due to the passing of various family pets over the past few years, or perhaps...

Keep Reading