My son (37) is in surgery

by Rod Smith

“My son is 37. He is not in a life threatening surgery and yet when I got the text this morning that he was in the operating room I wanted to cry.  I didn’t. But for some reason I wanted to.”

Your note illustrates that the umbilical cord is infinitely elastic! He is your son. You have been with him from “the beginning.” You have seen him through every phase of his life. You are going to “feel it” whenever he faces trials and difficulties. 

While you need no permission I’d suggest you go ahead and cry all you want and all you need. 

While I do not know this to be true  – how could I? – I will suggest your emotions and wanting to express them is only partially due to the immediate surgery that he is undergoing. The immediate surgery triggers your memory to hundreds of other times over the years of things you have faced together as he was going through every phase of his life thus far. 

Our challenge as parents of adult sons and daughters is to function as highly and healthily as possible given that our role and work as parents is complete, despite the emotional responses we will have when our “children”  – they are no longer children but fellow adults –  are challenged.

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