Letting go of attachments

divine truth

When my second son was born a very talented cousin made him a baby quilt. As Patrick began to walk that “blankie” went with him everywhere. It played in playgrounds, the beach, watched movies in theaters, and took long rides in the car. It was washed every other day. He and his blanket were inseparable until one day. On a sunny Florida Saturday afternoon when he was four, Patrick took his treasured security to the swings in our backyard. He came in for lunch and the blanket was used as a tug of war by our two dogs. When he realized what had happened it was too late. The blanket was shredded into pieces. He went into heartbreak. He broke like I had never seen him.

I held him in my arms as he sobbed, his heart bleeding into mine with loss and sorrow. He couldn’t believe that his blankie was gone. How would he sleep at night? What would protect him? Within his questions I kissed his head and rocked him. I told him that “things” didn’t protect us. The faith he had in his blanket and companionship could be replaced by allowing God to protect him. At that moment he looked up at me. His eyes swollen from so many tears and he said that he couldn’t live without his blanket. We sat up and talked for an hour about possibilities, the heavens and faith.

As a mother I have witnessed so many of these heart wrenching moments of desperation. I told him that I didn’t have a blanket and that I was safe. I would put a huge bubble around me every day and around him and his brother. Both my boys were wiser than their young years. It wasn’t hard for him to understand the concept of letting go of attachments.

That night when I tucked him into bed, he placed his thumb in his mouth and rubbed the end of his shirt since his blanket was no longer there. He removed the thumb when he saw me and said, “Mommy, I don’t need my blankie. I have God protecting me now. I am putting blue bubble gum around me.” From that moment on my sweet son has been the minimalist in the family. That young man now, in his mid-twenties, has no love for things. He follows experiences rather than accumulate the materialism. He lives in complete simplicity.

How many of us have security blankets that we won’t let go? How many of us fill our homes and lives with stuff that occupies space but doesn’t do anything but clutter and weigh us down? In order to find divine truth and peace there has to be less of these things. Stuff is just stuff. The importance that we give it is as valuable as believing in divinity. Wrap yourself in assurance that less is more. God bless you!

9 thoughts on “Letting go of attachments

  1. What a wonderful and difficult story. I can feel the depth of his loss. Thank you for sharing. As I settle to sleep I will be thinking about being surrounded by blue bubble gum.

  2. You taught him a valuable lesson. One that is hard to learn as you accumulate throughout your life. A few years back I lost all my mementos. I try to say it doesn’t matter and some days it works. But there are days that I think about the things I lost. Like my son’s blanket, my kids art work, my doll that would be 53 years old and the family pictures I was entrusted with. I lost my treasured notebook of every poem I wrote before the 1980’s. I beat myself up some mornings when I’m laying in bed and my thoughts turns to those things. Some times I’m able to shake it off they are just things others I have a lump in my throat I can’t get rid of.

  3. Growing up as a young girl, our poverty didn’t allow for us to have many things and we were still happy kids! We only got a doll at Christmas so it became a treasured gift. Today, that sense of having material things never stuck with me because they could be taken away, so I never became attached. Instead I found happiness in just doing and enjoying my life. Though my lifetime of collecting photographs is my lifeline to the past and I would be hard-pressed if I had to part with them. These are my “things”! Love you sweet daughter and that we share some beautiful memories about our boys!

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