I knew the day would come sooner or later, but I guess I was counting on later.
The phone started to ring. The caller id popped up on the screen. And there it was...HIS phone number. That darked haired boy who likes her. The boy she likes back. The shy, polite boy who shares a birthday with her Nana and a name with her Daddy. He was calling her.
As she held the phone to her ear, I overheard her. I could sense disappointment in her voice. My ears perked up. The urge to listen was a bit overwhelming and I admit I may have found myself eavesdropping. (Please tell me I'm not the only mother who has done a little listening in all in the name of protecting their child.)
I heard her quietly decline an invitation because she had somewhere else to be. I sensed her turmoil: sadness over having to decline but her desire to "do the right thing", be responsible and follow through on what she had already agreed to. I was proud of her, but honestly, my heart was breaking a little bit relating to her internal struggle.
So, I asked her what was going on. That boy. He had invited her to a movie. Not just any movie. The one she has been asking to see and I have been promising to take her to "as soon as I have the time". (May I always remember to somehow find time for my little girl - even amongst the chaos - before it's too late.)
So, in that moment, I did what any nice mom (or perhaps crazy person) would do. I told her if she wanted to go with him, she should GO! I gave her permission to skip the night of VBS (Lord forgive me for telling her to skip VBS for a "date")...get him back on the phone ASAP and tell him yes...she'd go. She dialed. She talked. She informed me that they'd be picking her up in a couple of hours. She could barely contain her excitement!
My mama emotions, on the other hand, were all over the place. I was excited for my girl. I was nervous. My heart was breaking a little for the loss of my "baby" girl. Oh, she's growing up too fast. All those nights spent snuggling that tiny baby in the rocking chair are both just yesterday and an eternity ago.
The minutes ticked away on the clock, and at the precise promised moment, the car pulled to the curb in front of our home. Prompt and punctual he came for her. As her face lit up, she gently turned and kissed me on the cheek before heading out the door and down the front steps. I watched the back car door open...out stepped that boy. I watched as, like a true gentleman, he held the door open to let her in and gently slid into the seat next to her.
Here I was taking yet another step on the journey of letting my girl grow and blossom.
How apprpriate that they were headed to see the movie, Brave. In that very moment, as I watched the car pull away from the curb, with my little girl inside, I had to be brave.
Brave like the mother bird in my parents' yard who is teaching her babies to fly. Brave enough to let her stretch her wings. Brave enough to know when to go alongside her as she gains the knowledge and confidence to reach for the sky and soar. Brave enough to hang back and watch her flying free. (Remember this post?) All the while I hope and pray that she will always remember to return for the comfort and love that await her back at our "nest".
P.S. Accompanied by his parents and his two younger brothers, they had a great time, loved the movie and mama survived. (Though I admit, there may have been some pacing and watching out the window when it started to be time for her to arrive home.) AND she wants to see the movie again...this time with ME!