The Care and Feeding of a Grown Child

statue of mother and child

One of the hardest things about being a mother is no longer being able to “fix” things when your child gets older.

My only child is now closer to thirty than twenty, and I often feel helpless.

Gone are the days when a cuddle could cure everything. A hug and a batch of still-warm homemade cookies used to work wonders, but not anymore.

A phone call or in-person visit to the school used to be great for coming up with a plan of action to improve grades or discuss behavior, but you just can’t call your grown child’s employer to negotiate a well-deserved raise or ask why he didn’t get a promotion.

Because I live so far away, phone and Facebook messenger are the ways we stay in touch. If I don’t hear from him, I rest assured that all is going well.

He occasionally calls just to say hey, but often there is a dilemma or problem he needs to ask about.
Sometimes he is upset about something random and just wants to vent. He knows I will listen to his ranting and still love him regardless of his opinions or thoughts or anger.

When he called because his girlfriend left and he had a broken heart, my heart was broken also.

My arms often ache to hold him. I listen as he talks, offering what comfort and insight I can.   I am relieved when he acknowledges his mistakes and takes responsibility for his actions that caused her to leave.

I lecture him about being a jerk and a bone headed male. I give him advice about how to not be that way in the future.   Then I tell him he is doing great otherwise and that I’m proud of him.

 I encourage him to always try to better himself and to focus his energy into something productive instead of being sad.

I remind him to pay his car insurance and get his oil changed. I encourage him to work on his art and take steps to get it out to the public.

When he is frustrated and at a loss of what to do, I remind him that he won’t always be in this same situation and that his life circumstances will change.

I send money when he needs it, offer advice when he asks for it, and provide guidance and suggestion even when he doesn’t.

If a dollar magically appeared in his bank account every time I think of him, he wouldn’t need to worry about money.
If the joy he has brought to my life could assure him whenever he feels unsure, he would always be confident.
If my admiration could lift him up when he is down, he would be on the highest mountain and be living the life he dreams of.
If I could give him the world, I would. But this is his life to live and all I can do is be here for him to encourage him and comfort him. I will always be here to empower him to be the best person he can be.

I will always be here to love him and be his biggest fan.

Other mothers of grown children, I would love to hear your stories or comments below.



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