Musings From A Musical Mind

Launching The Kid

Today I put my husband and son on a plane bound for California – the place of dreams for my 19-year-old son – as far back as he and I can remember.  I remember 10 years ago while on a family vacation – we were in L.A. and driving by the U.C.L.A. campus in Hollywood – and Shawn saying – ‘I’m living here someday’.  And although he will be attending Musician’s Institute in Hollywood and not U.C.L.A. – it feels the same to him – he will be living his dream of “someday”.  And we have all learned that today – “someday” has arrived.

I have many memories of my son as I think of him trying to navigate in strange surroundings and remember that he was the child who did NOT like anything strange and unfamiliar.  He would hang back – ponder and take his time on everything – even as a young child.  One time when he was three and staying the afternoon with my parents  – they couldn’t find him – he was playing “hide-n-seek” and took it seriously being very still and quiet – even when they called and called him.  They freaked out and called the police because they were sure he had run away or something terrible had happened to him.  I came back from my errand and they told me “not to panic” but they couldn’t find Shawn!  Because I know my son – I was confident it just was NOT in his nature to run off and knew he must be hiding.  As soon as he heard my voice – he came out – and was bewildered that there were police there – not understanding what all the fuss was about!

He has been a shy, timid and thoughtful child his whole life – growing into a kind and generous human being with a great sense of humor.  He has what Greg and I have always called “the X-Factor” – charm, good looks and talent.  He has also made and kept many friends – one in particular, since he has been three years old.  This is the mark of an excellent person – one who keeps friends,  his promises and cares deeply about others.  But he has never been one to venture too far from home.  Oh he’s gone on the occasional trip with friends and even some missions trips with church – and one memorable trip to help with the relief effort in Haiti this last December – but he always came back home.  There was always the safety of knowing where he came from and felt our arms of love and protection over the years.

As his talent grew and made way for him – we saw him blossom – and God use him in incredible ways with his music – and particularly his drumming.  We’ve been proud of him, self-taught like his Dad and I’ve been proud to have been his singing and piano teacher for a time in his earlier life because I believe it gave him the foundation to teach himself guitar as well and develop as a song writer and worship leader.

Leaving home for bigger horizons was just a matter of time – and we have known this day would come for about two years now.  But God as been preparing all of our hearts and so beautifully blessed him financially and with a wonderful support system of friends and family.

But still – like any parent I ask myself these questions:

Did I do enough?

Was I a good enough example – with all my flaws and failures?

Did I prepare him enough?

Will he cling to Jesus in his darkest and loneliest days so far from home?

Will his faith sustain him?

Will he remember all the things we tried to teach him?

Were we good enough role models?

Did we love him enough?

Did we live what we believed?

If you are like me – you probably wonder the same thing as your children grow up and begin to step into the world and have their own lives.  As they begin to launch.  I’m thankful that God makes up for any lack that I may have – and He understands that I am flawed and human.  I also know beyond all question that Shawn was given to me to raise – and not someone else.  God knew that I was exactly what Shawn needed me – flaws, mistakes, shortcomings and all.  And because I know that to be true – and that He loves Shawn even more than I do –  I can rest and know that all is well.

And so the journey continues – our son who was a special gift on loan to us – is off to pursue and live his dream.  And we release and bless him to be everything that he can be – to be a blessing to others and follow God’s voice in his life.

Launching complete.

When was the last time you wondered if you had done enough?  Have you ever felt inadequate?

God Bless

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Comments on: "Launching The Kid" (12)

  1. We’re here in Burbank right now – his new “home.”. You should see him; you’d love watching his excitement and engagement in the process. I’m proud of him, and believe me Cindy, you’ve done an excellent job.
    Launching complete.

    • I’m so glad and relieved to hear this – he is a great kid – but you were right there for him and a great daddy – I’m sure that’s why he is so great and turned out to be so kind and patient – just like you 🙂 Must make you proud!

  2. Aww! I know you have mixed emotions, but hang in there. He had a good foundation at home. 🙂

    I have small kids (7 and 4) and even now, I wonder if I’m doing a decent job at raising them. I want their foundation to be Christ and I want them to be smart, respectful and outgoing. That’s my prayer everyday!

    • You just don’t strike me as a guy with two small children, Moe – but it’s so nice to hear! If they have a firm foundation in those younger days – they will be strong of character and never stray far from what they believed as a child. If you remember to enjoy the journey and that they are only ‘on loan’ then you can release them with joy for the next chapter of their lives 🙂

  3. Cindy, thanks for stopping by my blog! I know only too well the emotions you are feeling about sending your son out into the world. But you are so correct when you said that you can rest because God loves him even more than you do! That’s a hard thing to grasp when we love our children so much, but it is so true. May you be blessed in this new stage of YOUR life.

    • Thanks so much Laura – I will be adding your blog to my blogroll you see on the right side of this page. I appreciate the support more than you know – and I think of your son David as a son as well – he’s a super wonderful guy raised by a really great mom – I can tell 🙂

  4. Wonderful post. Heartwarming and gentle with love. I went through the same thing when my son, Ben, joined the military and went to war in 2004. His 24 months in Qatar seemed a lifetime away and all those questions surfaced. Now, my son and daughter (now in their late 20’s with spouses and two grandchildren apiece for me) live within a 20 minute drive in an area we never expected to be in, let alone togther.

    God is wondrous – and you’ll find out later that what you did was EXACTLY enough and EXACTLY what it was meant to be.

    Wishing your son and you much sucess and joy in the present and the years to come:)

    • What a beautiful comment – this one actually made me tear up 🙂 God is so good and thank you for the words of encouragement and validation from one mom to another – so important! Thanks so much Marissa – wishing you and your family the same.

  5. I worried about the same things sending my first born out half way across the country for college, but she got plugged into a great Christian sorority and another Christian collegiate ministry. Her faith is stronger now than when she left. Tell him to make sure he’s plugged into a group of good Christian friends and organizations and he will make his faith his own. That will sustain him while he’s away.

    • Yes I AGREE! The buddy from here that also went down for school and the one Shawn is rooming with – has already found a great church with a strong college group. I’ve told him that he needs to get families to adopt him – much like we have always done with college age kids around here. I know he will have several that will adopt him 🙂

  6. Cindy, I wonder those things every single day and I always feel inadequate, especially when things don’t go right for them. However, I know I’ve done my best and once grown, some of that responsibility now rests with them. My husband is fond of saying. . . “The Bible says train up a child in the way he should go and when he is old he shall not depart from it. It doesn’t say anything about when they’re young and stupid.” LOL I think we’ve all had to go through our “young and stupid” phase. Mine almost killed me. But I believe that I gave my kids a strong foundation and they will be back if they stray. You and Greg gave Shawn that same kind of foundation. He is strong. He’ll be okay. That realization won’t keep you from worrying, Mom, but the time comes for all when we have to let go and give them to God. And then we can redecorate their room! bwahahahaha!!!

    • Thanks Carla – you have much more experience in this department than I do for sure! It was hard when Ashlee moved out – but she didn’t leave the area – it’s hard him going to California – so far away – but I know he’s had a great foundation and he will be great! His room will be the guest room – I have plans to deep clean it – I’ve already cleaned out “my” car this morning – I finally have it back after a couple of years letting my son use it for work and school – it feels strangely familiar!

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