I realize that last week's ranting about Field Day and the lack of WINNING might lead you to believe that I missed some of the wonder and joy surrounding the event. That would be incorrect.
While I did spend a good amount of time trying to convince 2nd graders that I gave up my career of training and riding unicorns professionally to be a stay at home momma, I also spent lots of time gawking at the 5th graders. I've known most of these kids since they were in pre-school, and now they are transitioning physically, emotionally, academically and spiritually. They are going to the next place; middle school.
Chubby cheeks, baby teeth and make believe have been replaced with braces, awkward, gangly bodies, and tween drama. My helicopter parenting and concerns over my sensitive little man have disappeared. Of course I realize he's not raised yet. I'm not sending him to the military or off to college but in my heart, I know that part of him has moved on from me. I'm not worried but I'm grieving.
I try to be present, mindful of the moment I am in with my children, but I realize that I've yet to reach that level of enlightenment where I've got my Zen on. Son of a BITCH! Where has the time gone?
This morning, I watched my golden haired boy drop his skateboard on the driveway and roll away towards the school. He didn't look back and wave. I felt a flutter in my gut as I closed the door. I watched the coffee drip slowly into the pot and realized that I was crying. ME! Crying?
Boo Hoo Coffee is the yearly event where moms and dads enjoy crappy coffee in the school cafeteria on the first day of school after dropping off their kindergartener. I've never participated in the Boo Hoo. I'm the parent hauling ass away from the school, giddy with joy.
I never felt Boo Hoo personally, but my heart has always ached for the moms and dads who struggled with the kindergarten milestone. Just because we react differently doesn't mean we love differently.
I silently promised on the very day I saw another child push my kid down for the first time, that I would follow his lead. I would NOT hover, panic, intervene, tattle or allow him to be a victim of the world. I watched him look at me, wondering how he should react. I smiled through my urge to annihilate a 4 year old with my mind powers. That wee menace put his grimy mitts on my kid! I smiled, nodded and choked out the words, "Go play, Buddy, time's a wastin'."
I know that the most important job I have as a parent is to encourage my children to be brave and independent. The only thing that I KNOW I can actually give them that will always matter and ALWAYS be precious to them is the knowledge that they are capable human beings. The only way to give them this gift is to constantly encourage them to be O.K. being away from me. I am mindful that I struggle to find that incredibly difficult balance between the hover and neglect.
So, instead of the kindergarten Boo Hoo coffee, I had the 5th grade Coffee Sob. My blubbering was abruptly interrupted by a text from the neighborhood moms. "Hey, get your ass over here. We're having mimosas and coffeecake to celebrate the last day of school."
Saved by Moms who drink and swear.
Filed under: Uncategorized