This is the last time you get to look at your daughter or son and know that they are just yours. They are in your family first and when it comes to familial loyalties, everyone else would be second. Once they’re married, on the other hand, they aren’t yours first anymore; they are someone else’s.
“Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave unto his wife: and they shall be one flesh.” (Genesis 2:24)
“And said, For this cause shall a man leave father and mother, and shall cleave to his wife.” (Matthew 19:5)
When your child marries, they are starting a new family and that family is now their first priority in all things. That doesn’t mean that you are thrown by the wayside or completely discarded, but it means that you are no longer the most important person in their lives.
They have grown up learning from you, what to do or say or how to live. Even if it’s learning these things by your example they are still learning by watching you. You have put your blood, sweat and tears into raising this child and now they are going off away from you. They will still be your child, but that won’t be the first thing people think about them anymore.
That doesn’t mean that they don’t still need you. You may not be the first person they run to when in need of help, that honor is now for their spouse, but that doesn’t mean that you don’t exist anymore.
Sometimes it’s hard to know this. Our world has become so busy and there are so many problems and solutions to everything and anything that people often forget (or want to forget) where they came from. But there will always be something of you in these grown up people that used to need you for everything. You raised them after all and some part of them will always remember that, even if it’s only in the little things. But you are important, because your child is here and getting married and that wouldn’t have been possible without you in the first place.
“And thou shalt teach them diligently unto thy children, and shalt talk of them when thou sittest in thine house, and when thou walkest by the way, and when thou liest down, and when thou risest up.” (Deuteronomy 6:7)
“But ye will teach them to walk in the ways of truth and soberness; ye will teach them to love one another, and to serve one another.” (Mosiah 4:15)
They know what a family is because of you. They know what to do and what not to do because of you.
They are not trying to hurt you by leaving you. They want to go out and do what you have taught them with their own family started.
“Honour thy father and thy mother: that thy days may be long upon the land which the Lord thy God giveth thee.” (Exodus 20:12)
Thank you for raising us to be able to do the things we do. Thank you for being there for us when we fell and when we flew through the skies. Thank you for loving us enough to let us go.
Written in honor of my mother, who went to Hell and back for her children and quietly loved us all.