I know you mean well. I know that you only want the best for me, as you always have. After all, the entire world sits on my shoulders, and the entire family is waiting for me to join them in their ranks of success. I understand that there’s things that I do that you don’t exactly agree with, I know that there’s things that you think are more important than I do.

But please, can you not control everything? Can you not make every choice for me? Can you just trust in me once, put faith in my decisions and my judgments, understand things from my perspective and comprehend that not everything work the way we want them to.

I don’t need you to sell me reasons to listen or search for the proof that I should. You don’t have to convince me that I’m wrong; I don’t need more reminders of all that’s been broken. I don’t want you to fix what I’d rather forget. But that doesn’t mean that it’s all in your hands, that everything you ever held onto is for you to control.

I know that you know better than I do. I know that there’s so much I can never know. I know that there’s so much I can never do or understand but there’s so much that you don’t know because you’re not me. There’s so much that you can never truly understand until you’ve seen it. And there’s so much you can’t see because you just don’t understand. You want everything right now but you don’t see that everything takes a little patience. It takes a little time. A little perseverance and a bit of uphill climb.

You think that you’re helping me but really you’re just holding me back without realizing it. You don’t know that holding my hand through it all stops me from running.

I love you very much, and there’s nothing I can say that will show you how much I do. But you gotta understand that I’m too old to be a child. I’m still your son, but not your baby. Not anymore. And I wish I could be, because that means I don’t have to face the world and all its atrocities. But I need to discover everything. I need to see it for myself. I have to understand the human condition, seek out the reason for my own existence. Everything has an answer; and I need to find it.

And I want you to help me, not hold me. I’ve always been within but now I need to be without. There’s an entire world behind me, a new one ahead of me, and I wonder what mistakes I’ll make next. And I know that I don’t know the way but you didn’t either, and you don’t. You can’t. Even if you were to live a hundred lifetimes, there’s no way you could ever know how to do this. No map can ever show us where we’re headed, or where we’ve been. But I know that you’re standing beside me, holding my hand as I walk along a thin line between the life I’m destined to live and the life I’ll regret living.

I know I’ll make mistakes along the way. I’ll screw up at every possible turn. I’ll break every fragile thing in my hand and destroy every meaningful totem I come across and burn everything that will catch fire. But the mountains are calling, and I must go.

So please, Mother, hold my hand, but don’t hold me back. Lead me ahead. Allow me to make decisions, to make mistakes; that’s how we learn. That’s how we live. That’s all I want; to make a few mistakes along the way, because that’s what makes us human and that’s what makes us rise and fall.

I know that it’s hard to let me go. But don’t just sit back and watch me. Come with me, let me lead me on this untraveled path, discover who I am, so I can become who you want me to be.