Open Handed

Happy Birthday to my Youngest Gift: Oakley Andrew is 6 years old today. IMG_0604

After we¬†enjoyed a donut the size of Oakley’s head, complete with white frosting and assorted sprinkles (his fave), as well as assorted and seasonal donuts for all, brought by good friend Carol, consumed by sweet siblings and courteous, cute cousins, the birthday boy went to school and I went to the gym.

Completing what felt like another breath-taking (literally) and leg-leading (this is when my legs feel filled with lead), Crossfit workout, I went to give props to a fellow, yet stronger, athlete, Caroline. We walked towards each other arms extended. I balled my hand for a fist bump and she had hers open for a high-five. In a split second, we switched. The result: I wrapped my open high-five hand around her now closed fist. We smiled, she mused: “This is the modern dilemma right? Fist bump or high five!?”

I walked away and thought, “I do want to live my life open-handed…”

It was a brief, gym-brained moment but I rode it a bit longer. Open hands call me to two postures: open to receive, and willing to let go.

I’ve prayed on my knees for 9 of the last 14 days. The thought came and stuck so I called it Spirit and slunk down. I go to my knees and put my hands out in front of me, palms up, fingers splayed. The intention is to release (mostly) my kids back to the God who gave them to me.

Perhaps if I’m not holding on so tight, I’ll parent less with anger, frustration and control, and more with listening, grace, and wisdom outside myself.

On my knees, I’m palms up for reception. I want to receive what I cannot have alone. I want to be OPEN to what the day and the people, the plans and the quiet will bring. Can I really be open to receiving what I do not expect, am uncomfortable with, and cannot control? Can those receptions shape and move me?

Mostly, open hands mean I’m looking more to possibility than pessimism. To potential instead of problems and plight. I yearn to grow more naturally into this more hopeful perspective as my default. I need to open my hands.

think letting go is the hardest. To trust Eli, Andi, and Oakley to live their own lives, in the step of the Spirit who dwells within and leads ahead, with the mark of the initiation of God’s grace and the support of their family (and by family I mean FAMILY- read: blood relatives, neighbors, assigned team families, YL friends and more), means I don’t fully lead, shape and direct but steward, consult, let fail, and constantly support them in all of their uniqueness.

I do really want to open hand my kids.IMG_0937

Oakley, after six years of holding onto you, this year I’ve had to let you go like never before. My hands are open to the grace of the gift you are in my life and I’m willing to let other people know, love and enjoy you.

Oaks, from you I receive, with open hands, your dimpled smile, tiny nose, still small questions, child-like wonder, and creative inquisition. I release you, I let go, so you might risk, run, listen, learn, know and kneel, accept and reject, befriend and bless.

Oh to have you go. And yet I am open, handed and hearted, to receive what God has next, all the while understanding my hands and heart are already so full.

IMG_1112

 

No comments yet.

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.