Last week we finally got rid of our car seats. We’d had booster seats in Bray’s truck, but my nanny and I were still running around town with the five point harness full blown carseats three across the row in our cars even though I have Amazonian five year olds that had started complaining of the tight fit (S is four feet tall!).
I posted that I might be selling six car seats if anyone had any boosters for sale on a Facebook trading site . No one was selling any booster seats, but EVERYONE wanted my car seats. With that, poof, all six car seats were sold, and I was in the market for booster seats in a hurry.
Two of the kids were elated as we drove to Target to purchase their new seats. The other one, even though he is the tallest and most in need of a more accommodating ride, was heartbroken.
This is my sentimental kid. This is the one that never wants to give away any of the toys he’s outgrown because of his emotional connection to each item. He is the one that mourned having to give up Bandit while the other two went on about their business. He is the one that cries when Bray or I leave for the weekend. This boy is all heart. And he was sad about losing his carseat. It’s the only way he’s known how to ride in our car.
He asked if he could be the last one to ride in the seat behind mine because it’s the boys’ favorite one. He asked if he could sit in each car seat as I got ready to remove them from the car. Then he asked if I’d take pictures of the carseats, and then he asked if I could take HIS picture in each seat. Oh mercy y’all, I love this sweet child so much. I could have hugged him for hours. So I took his pictures and let him be sad about having to let go.
It is okay to be sad to let go.
It is okay to feel sentimental before you move on.
Even if you know you have outgrown whatever it is, the letting go can hurt all the same.
Every leadership or self-help book emphasizes the need to take risks. They command, “Step out and take brave action… Move outside your comfort zone.. Make the wise choice.”
They don’t talk much though about what you have to leave behind. Or the way your heart hurts when you grow out of the stage you are in.
It’s good, right? We want growth. You grow or you wither.
But in that moment of looking at what you have to release, it’s okay to feel sad. Or nostalgic. Or sentimental.
I remember the last time I changed jobs. There was no question the step I was taking was wise. It was brave. It was good for my career. But my heart still hurt a little. At leaving the familiar. At having to prove myself all over again.
It may be time for you to move out of the car seat into the booster. You know it, but you haven’t done it yet because your heart is breaking a little at the prospect of growing up a little more. It’s okay. You can cry. Take a picture. Feel the full weight of leaving something (or someone or some place) behind.
But then make the move. Take the first step. Do the thing.