There are five steps to freedom. Literally, with five little chubby footed steps, I think Bronson will be free.
He waddled four steps yesterday. The walls of the room could hardly contain the pride. Bronson’s expression was priceless – a combination of concentration and confidence with a side of fever and fear.
And then there was me: delighted and disturbed. My life will completely change once he’s mastered mobility, but this is what I’ve wanted for him all along: the freedom to go and be.
It’s an odd thing to be a parent, to paradoxically want your child dependent and snuggly and autonomous and able. It’s a struggle to let go of Bronson’s plump fingers and watch him go.
I know this is just the beginning. The rest of his childhood will be a series of moments where his freedom, his growth, requires my yielding, my letting go.
And sometimes in that process there’s pain, for both of us. Bronson falls more because he’s searching for his footing. I’ll watch him go places he shouldn’t.
God grants me freedom: the freedom to go and be, the freedom to fall and fail. I imagine there’s pain in it for him, and I know there’s pain in it for me. But it’s still what he’s chosen because he loves me enough to set me free.