“Love Them Enough To Let Them Go”

Two of my children moved across the country, and people always ask me how I manage missing them and not having them home for every holiday. My answer is this: I love themkids1 enough to let them go.

I’ve learned a thing or two raising five kids in the last 28 years and learning to let them go without a struggle, or  too many tears, or guilt is one of the biggest ones.

No one said it was easy, but it does get easier as you learn how to do it and I’ll tell you this, my kids are thankful that I’ve learned how to do it. My one son told me that he couldn’t do “at home” what he could accomplish across the country. He told me that the best thing I did for him was to let him go and do it on his own. And he did, and I’m so proud of him for it.

What I had to learn is that as much as I want to protect them and shelter them from the craziness of the world, I can’t. They’ll never learn what they need to learn; they’ll never make mistakes that will become valuable lessons for them; and most importantly, they’ll never learn how to stand on their own and be strong.

I realized that I had to learn from my own mistakes and I shouldn’t interfere with their free will to do the same. It’s a simple concept, yet hard to do, but if you truly want the best for your child, you have to love them enough to let them go. And trust me, they always come back.

It’s a funny thing: love travels across the miles with them, and their love for me travels back. Love can’t be taken from them, love goes with them.

I didn’t learn this lesson overnight, as my oldest son would tell you, but as the years passed my faith in them increased. I knew I had taught them right from wrong, and one day they’d have to take all I taught them and do it on their own. And I’m proud to say that they’re all doing pretty well!

I see so many parents struggle with letting their kids go, enabling bad behaviors, doing everything for them that these kids grow into adults who don’t know how to do anything for themselves. They don’t know how to cook, clean, do laundry; they don’t know how to battle their own demons because someone does it for them. They don’t know how to grow up because someone won’t let them. They don’t know how to take responsibility for their actions because someone is always making excuses for them.

And that’s the worst thing you could do to your child.

kids2I’ve been a mom for almost 28 years and have loved every minute of it (well, most every minute of it!) It was so much easier when they were younger and thought everything we said was truth; when we could simply kiss a boo-boo and make it go away; that loving them was enough for them.

And then they grow older and challenge what we say; broken hearts replace simple boo-boo’s that we can’t kiss away; and loving them suddenly doesn’t seem like enough. They want our love, yet they also want the freedom to live their life the way they want to, not the way we had hoped.

They want the right to do it on their own, learn their own lessons, and make their own mistakes, and if you can’t love them enough to let them go, they’ll do all those things but come crying back to you to fix it when it goes wrong…and you can’t do that. Why?

Because then you become an enabler, and an enabler does so because they can’t control their own life, and if you really love your child, why would you enable them? Why would you enable their bad behavior? Why would you enable them to stay dependent on you?

I know, it’s a slippery slope, but I know from my own experience as a parent that the best thing I could have ever done for my kids is to “love them enough to let them go;” love them enough to live their life the way they want; love them enough to make their own mistakes and learn from them.

I miss my  three older kids who are scattered throughout the country, but I know they’re happy, living their dreams, and doing well. And isn’t that what any parent wants?

I’d rather take the hurt of missing them than put guilt on them for living far away.

As long as they’re happy, I’m happy.

And they were very happy that I was the kind of mom who could “love them enough to let them go.”

Wishing you love and light,

~Anne Dennish~

“Then and Now”

“Are You An Enabler?”

Enabling is “making excuses for someone who is hurting themselves or you, or providing the perfect environment or situation for them to do so. enable-2

That word is a slippery slope for many, and if you are someone who “enables” someone else, then you become “co-dependent.” That is, your existence is based around the behavior of the person you are enabling.

It’s exhausting just thinking about it, yet we’ve all done it in some capacity in our lives; until we realize that the outcome of “enabling” and being “co-dependent” doesn’t’ serve the one we’re enabling, but serves only the “co-dependents” need to control. I’ve found that those who “enable” have no control over their own lives’, or so they believe. They would rather control someone else’s life rather than deal with their own insecurities and lack of control. And the sad part is, they don’t even see what they’re doing as control; they see it as “love.” Yet that’s not love. Controlling someone is not love. Enabling someone to hurt themselves or other’s is not love. It’s their insecurity and lack of control.

You can enable an alcoholic or drug addict by making excuses for them, giving reasons for their addiction, and without realizing that you  are giving them exactly what they need to use or abuse. It may make you feel more comfortable, yet is the most damaging and enable-3hurtful behavior to them.They can only begin recovery when you stop enabling and allow the to be accountable for themselves.

You enable an abusive partner or spouse by making excuses as to why you’re bruised, why your self-esteem is but a foreign concept, and why you deserved to be abused. You’re not helping the abuser to stop, but merely giving him the license and free will to do so. It’s only when you get strong and secure within yourself that you’re able to break free and control YOUR behavior, not theirs.

 

It’s not until you are faced with the ultimate decision: enable the behavior or disable your control. And the truth is, no enabler really has control over the enabled; you just give them a comfort zone of knowing you’ve allowed their destructive behavior to be okay.enable

It’s hard to let someone you love make a mistake or willingly harm themselves, yet it has to be their choice and, ultimately, their decision to stop the destructive behavior. You can say all the right things, do all the right things, and want all the right things, yet that doesn’t make it so. You have to “love them enough to let them go.” Love them enough to make their own mistakes and learn from them. Love them enough to learn to control their own behavior. Love them enough to let them learn to love themselves.

“Enabling” someone will not solve their problem; it will make their problem worse.

You have to ask yourself: Do I want to enable their behavior or disable my control?.

And in your heart you already know the right answer.

Wishing you love and light,

~Anne Dennish~

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“Fallen Angel”

I have some exciting news that I’ve been waiting to share with all of you…and today is the day!

I’ve joined creative forces with one of the most amazing, creative and talented singers and musicians that I was blessed to meet through my love and his cousin, Thomas. It’s time to introduce you to Sutton Thomas, owner of Heart2Song.com!

Let me tell you how this new adventure of Anne Dennish and Sutton Thomas began. A few weeks ago I wrote lyrics as a theme song for my new book, “Waking Up,” and sent them to him. He sent back an amazing song and the general feedback from most who heard it said that we should do a compilation of songs together that coincide with the book! I am most honored and thrilled that Sutton Thomas has agreed to work with me on this new adventure!

Here’s your first listen at a song I wrote that goes hand in hand with the story in the book called “Fallen Angel.” I wrote this song for someone who holds a special place in my heart. It’s about his struggles with addiction. I’ve watched him fall, and I’m blessed to be part of watching his journey through recovery.

None of us choose to fall, we are chosen to fall. We are chosen to fall for many reasons, find a strength we never knew we had, and fight our way back up to greatness! I truly believe that it’s the “fallen angels” in this world that rise back up ready to change the world and make a difference.

 

And we don’t just fall from addiction; we fall for many reasons…and the lessons learned from the fall will bring us back to a better life, one that we always wanted and deserved. I’m a big believer that when our lives aren’t going the way they should, the Universe will step in and smack us with a 2×4! It’s that smack, that “fall from grace” that brings us to our knees and makes us take a cold, hard look at ourselves and our truth.

It’s when we finally “choose” to see our truth that the climb back up from the fall will bring us a new life, another chance to do it better, and will have finally taught us what “love of self” is… and how many miraculous, beautiful and wonderful things come into our life when we find that love of self.

I’m thrilled and honored to share “Fallen Angel” with all you! Both Sutton Thomas and I would appreciate any and all comments you have, and please feel free to share it out. Be sure to check out his website and “like” his Facebook page “Heart2Song!”

Once again, “it’s time to make a difference, and we can make a difference together.”

And today, the lyrics of Anne Dennish met the music of Sutton Thomas… and together, he and I want to make a difference through music.

I hope you enjoy the first public release of “Fallen Angel.”

Wishing you love and light,

~Anne Dennish~

“Welcome!”

Welcome to the “Anne Dennish” website, a true work in progress! My newest book is about to be released soon, and is entitled “Waking Up…Lessons Learned Through My Adventures With Life and Breast Cancer.” It’s a book I’ve spent two years writing, and trust me when I say: this book had a mind of its’ own! It wasn’t about to get published until it was absolutely ready!

All of my stories about “life” are those I personally experienced, or ones that I may have observed through friends and family. I’ve taken all the sound advice given to me throughout the years from amazing spiritual teachers and written about what I’ve learned.

There are stories of divorce, relationships, friendships, grief, addiction, children, parenting, and so much more! I can almost guarantee that if you tell me a subject you’d like to read about, you’ll find it  in my book!

I’ve also enclosed my raw and unedited journal I kept throughout my adventures with breast cancer! I’m happy to say that I’m a two year survivor now, yet I thought it important to release the journal, along with my personal pictures taken throughout my journey with breast cancer. Some call it brave to put all that in a book; I call it taking an experience I went through and sharing it with others’ to help someone else.

“I don’t mind going through whatever life hands me, as long as I can learn from it and use the experience to help someone else.”

Welcome to the world of Anne Dennish! Thank you for visiting! Be sure to follow my website as well as “like” my Facebook page. I’ll be sharing excerpts from “Waking Up” as well as information on my upcoming book release/celebration/signing party!

“It’s time to make a difference!”

~Anne  Dennish~anne dennish