He sits breathing heavily at the edge of the pool. 5 laps into his goal of 15. A goal he has chosen for himself. I long to call out “you could just start with 10.” Or maybe even that 5 is enough. I bite hard on my tongue, reminding myself that this is his goal, not mine. That I am here to witness and nothing more. I do ask are you okay? He gives me a look of determination that indicates, as I suspected, that I am not to speak right now. The 15 laps finish. He tells me how hard it was. While also how happy he is that he did it. I share about my tongue biting moments. He reminds me that he can do hard things. In fact he is looking to push just that part of him.

He sends me a text. “I has no money now.” It’s his first time away in the world managing his own funds. He has watched them. Made decisions on what to buy and when not say no thanks. I want to rush to the app and put more money in his bank account. Instead I ask “do you need more money?” He says “I don’t know.” We chat a bit more and he says “can I let you know tomorrow about the money?” Of course he can. I will sit quietly with my angst and trust he can handle this. When he comes to me to ask for money it’s because his friends will buy pizza and he wants to be able to contribute. I swell inside and get the funds to him. He is only asking for what he needs. He doesn’t require me to decide that for him. He in fact doesn’t want me making those decisions. He’s out here trying new things. Gathering skills that will sustain him beyond me and he wants room to own that outside of us.

My heart breaks and expands wider. I hear the request to stop rushing in for the rescue. So that they may both succeed or fail on their own merits. It’s bitter and sweet all in the same breath. And exactly, naturally where we ought to be in this season of their growing.