Taking Flight

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What does it mean to become a woman?  To become your own person, move out on your own and follow your dreams?  Our reader submits a powerful and emotional letter to her mother on her decision to leave home and move abroad and how the peace of knowing Christ has given her confidence to take a risk without fear of failure.

Dear Mama,

You’re sitting in the next room crying to my sister about me right now. You’re worried. You’re anxious. You’re frightened by the uncertainty. You’re terrified by my decision to move across the world without a job and only a rough plan of what I’ll be doing and where I’ll be going and I fully understand your feelings. I appreciate that you care for and love me so much that you want me to be comfortable, to be settled, to not have to worry.

But mother, I’m not worried.

I have told you a million times over and you do not understand what I’m saying and I can’t blame you because any normal person, any sane person in my shoes would be worried. I am a young college grad who, up until now, has never really done anything to stray from what you’ve wanted me to do. I went to a college close to home so I could see you every weekend. I pursued a career you encouraged. My outfit everyday is approved by you. However, now, I’m finally venturing out and trying something completely untested (by me, anyway. Plenty of other people have done the very same thing). I am out here without a job, without a place to stay, without a boyfriend, without friends. Scary.

But mother, I’m not scared. I am calm. I am at peace. I have entrusted God and I know He will carry me to where I need to be. You view the last few years as a waste of my time. I view it as some of the most valuable part of my life. While I moved on from many job ventures, I learned what I did not want to do so that I have a clearer idea of what I did want to pursue. While I ended relationships with many boyfriends, I discovered growth and self-identity in each of the relationships I did embark on. While I seem to be starting from scratch in a new country, I am far from the bottom – I am a woman who has grown so much in the past few years and am only growing more. I am growing into someone far greater than I have ever imagined to be. And only time will prove this.

Mother, I may not be growing into the woman you thought I would be but I am most am certainly growing into the woman that Christ wants me to be. Someone who is obedient and faithful in trusting in Him. Someone who understands how fast and fleeting material joy can be. Someone who understands that this life is just preparation for eternal joy. Those are the things I hold dear, not a position or a place of abode.

Your heart probably won’t ever stop worrying about me but I pray to the Lord everyday that it does and that you do find peace in your heart. I can only keep going on with my life and hope that someday you will realize that I am fine – better than fine—I am awesome! I am happy! I am challenged! I am fulfilled! I am blessed!

Please dry your tears, mother. It’s not worth it to fret over the future — something you have absolutely no control over.

I used to feel really guilty because, as you’ve often told me, you worked really hard throughout your entire life so that you could provide a better life for me and my sister. “Why didn’t I get the same chance?” I would wonder. But now I understand that though I may never get the chance to work hard the way that you ever did, toiling at work every day of the week even when you were 8 months pregnant, scrimping on dining out and desserts, I understand that I will work hard a different way.

I will work hard everyday of my life to not waste my life away. I will work hard to overcome barriers and people telling me no. I will work hard to give God glory in everything that I do. When it comes my time to raise my own daughter, I will teach her to make decisions on her own. I will teach her that I will always love her and have faith in everything she does because I have faith in God and His plans for us.

I know you want me to be just as worried about my future as you are but I’m not.

After putting my faith in Jesus, I don’t know how anymore.

Photo credit: Flickr / andyputnam

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