Your first step into anything often characterises your walk through it. So the change from child to adult is a gradual walk whose first step my young sonshine is about to take. I would like it to be taken with confidence, on firm footing, with a few dreams safely tucked up his sleeve. It’s his first step outside my nurturing nest and I want it to be brave and adventurous, with courage to be imperfect but bouyed on with encouragement for the man he could be.
I don’t think it has to be marked, but I love an occasion so have been researching rites of passage; different cultures mark the passage from child to adult differently, some are truly fascinating..http://listverse.com/2009/12/28/10-bizarre-rites-of-passage/ others are more familiar like confirmation or Barmitzvah.
A few friends have already embarked their children on a rite of passage, one girl is heading to S Africa with her Dad, a memorable adventure in itself, but included in there is the chance to visit an orphanage, which for her seals a childhood dream. I think it’s important to give young adults space to grow their dreams. Another home made rite of passage was a mountain trip, challenging and inspiring in one, plus a ceremonial burial of a childhood toy on top of one of the mountain peaks. A poignant goodbye!
I love the outward expression of internal change and am putting together our own homemade marking of the passage of time. I want it to be challenging- like when a young chick is pushed out of the nest and off a branch into a free fall to learn to fly. There’ll be no pretending that adult life is easy.
Ideally it would finish with an American Indian-esque campfire with respected elders who pass on stories, wisdom and prophecies maybe with body paint! Alot of fun, memories being made and a young man forged!