An excerpt from "The Prophet" by Kahlil Gibran
Your children are not your children,
They are the sons and daughters of Life's longing for itself.
They come through you but are not from you,
And though they are with you yet they belong not to you.
You may give them your love but not your thoughts,
For they have their own thoughts.
You may house their bodies but not their souls,
For their souls dwell in the house of tomorrow,
which you cannot visit, not even in your dreams.
You may strive to be like them, but seek not to make them like you.
For life goes not backward nor tarries with yesterday.
You are the bows from which your chilren
as living arrows are sent forth.
The archer sees the mark upon the path of the infinite, and
He bends you with His might that His arrows may go swift and far
Let your bending in th earcher's hand be for gladness;
For even as He loves the arrow that flies,
So he loves also the bow that is stable.
I read this poem many years ago now...when I was a new mother...still walking in awe of actually being a mother! I felt so protective of my baby...wanting his life to be perfect...or as near perfect as I could make it.
But, that poem has reminded me throughout the years that these children that I birthed from my body...that I dreamed about before they were even conceived, were not mine nor mine to mold into statues of what I think they should be. They are here to blaze their own trail in life and I hope I will always honour that.