I have a 13 year-old. Mary. Beautiful soul. Mary left for Thailand on the 11th of July. I had booked the tickets months in advance and was told that, because she was 13, I could not sign her up as an unaccompanied minor. This means she would have to travel from Charlotte to NYC to Beijing to Bangkok solo. If you have ever ventured to SE Asia, you will know that this is no small feat. It is 30 hours of travel and, though she was excited to see her dad, she was scared. And, needless to say, so was I. I have learned and am still learning to overcome my fears, but the gut-wrenching fear of ANYthing happening to my kid… well, I get choked up thinking about it.
Two weeks prior to her departure, when my anxiety and fears began to present themselves in magnificent colors, I spoke to some people who agreed that it would, in fact, be scary due to all the sex trafficking. They understood my fear, but instead of it being a reassuring conversation, my fears deepened. But a few days later I received a phone call from another friend who said this (take notes):
"You’ve got this, mom. Surround her with light. Have all your friends of light pray for her safe landing. Call in the Powers that Be, and they will take care of her."
Yeah, ok, but she’s still my kid… traveling alone… with strangers in strange lands. And then I started with the "what ifs." Dangerous place to be. He continued…
"Sit down with her. Talk about the solutions. Have her call you in NYC, in Beijing, in Bangkok. Set the ground rules so you KNOW she is safe in God’s hands."
And that made sense. And so I did just as he said. And, further, what I learned about myself and the world is two-fold. First, there is a huge balance between earth and Spirit. We need Spirit to guide us where and when we cannot be present. This is where faith comes into play. We need earth, boundaries, guidelines, and planning to comfort and lay the foundation so we know that the path is paved before us. And this takes clarity of vision. We cannot depend on just one or the other; we need both for balance.
Second, find solutions. My fear of Mary’s fear kept her from growing. Not only that, it exacerbated her fears. What this means is that, as parents, friends, colleagues, the best advice we can offer is that of comfort and a clear heart/mind. It’s like the flight attendant on the airplane – if s/he is freaking out, well, guess what?
In conclusion, this story, this situation taught me of my own power, and how I need others to help magnify and spread that power leading to change. We cannot give into our fears but instead observe that they are there and very real, and then tackle them head on. Together! When we arrived at the Charlotte airport, Mary was so well taken care of, I actually purchased the entire JetBlue staff chocolates out of utter gratitude (that is my next blog story). She is safe and is now having a blast spending time with her Thai family. And I have to add that, right before she stepped onto the airplane headed to New York, she looked at me and said, "I got this, mama. I’ll be OK."
This story was and is my inspiration for creating space for silence and reflection as a means of fighting our fears and blasting out darkness with positive light and energy. Globally. We can and DO actively connect through our hearts and minds to make this change. Please, please join me Wednesday at 9am or Friday at 7pm EST in this fight for light.