Wednesday, May 30, 2012

And so . . . It Begins . . .

I stood there fighting back the tears . . . and this is the first of many lasts.

There we stood in a hallway of the lower school. The 4th graders spanned the staircase. This was their night. There were many stages to the night - somewhat like a progressive dinner. They had an art exhibit with snacks and beverages, a choir concert, and Mystery Theatre where the children dressed up as their chosen biography character, got together in a group of 4, created a skit involving their characters and we as the audience had to guess who they were. So many moving parts to this evening . . .
Our oldest son is 10 and in the 4th grade. Lower school, at his school, goes from Pre-K through 4th Grade.

The entire day had been a blur - racing from one spot to another. Volunteering at school to help the kids rehearse their script. Draping the red curtains, working on bulletin boards, helping in the classroom. This had been going on for 10 days. I was working toward an end, task by task but not focusing on the why.
Choir Concert
Most of these kids have been working on these skills for 7 years. The Art teacher worked with them, teaching them how to build their 3-D art work.

The choir teacher took these small voices and taught them how to sing, train their voice and play the recorder.

The Humanities teachers from the earliest of years have been building reading, comprehension and writing skilled that enabled these kids to create power point presentations on the smart board as part of their skit. Back drops, narrator insertions, sounds, music all while they act their scene out in front of parents and peers.

Mystery Theatre
It was while we were standing in the hallway, listening to them sing I bust out my hand held video camera. I will spare you the video - I rewatched it only to see me shake . . . so much for a steady hand.  I knew there would be some dancing in the first song and . . . I had seen the rehearsal and knew . . . this would be very funny. So, with my video camera in hand, I am recording this moment. I zoom in as tight as I can. My screen is filled with his face and about 10 other boys. He isn't looking at me. He is doing as instructed, singing his heart out . . . having a good time . . . hanging with his friends.


And the start of tears.

This is the beginning of the end. Truly this is the first true mile marker, if you will, on his journey to becoming a confident, independent young man.

The realization that he isn't a little boy anymore hit me.

I see him everyday. I don't notice he is getting taller . . . I don't notice he is maturing . . . I don't notice he isn't a little boy anymore . . . he isn't my baby!

In that moment I was filled with so much pride . . . pride that he is a successful student, that he has tons of friends, that he is respectful, considerate, brilliant (if I do say so), and has such a beautiful heart. I am also filled with such sadness . . . that he no longer is that sweet little boys I would carry on my hip, that we have fewer days to just hang together than before . . . and that one day, way too soon, he will be off on his own!
Several years ago, Scoots said to me on Christmas Morning . . . "Mom, when I get married my wife and I are going to sleep in the bed with Dad and You" that is a tradition we have to help control when the kids get up so the entire family can be there to see what Santa brought.  Just as soon as he said it . . . I said "Promise?  I want that in writing."

And so my sweet baby boy . . . would could not imagine a Christmas morning where he didn't wake up in my bed with Dad, Me and his wife . . . wrote it on a notebook piece of paper and signed it. 

I know there are wonderful . . . awesome . . . fantastic things to come for my young man.  I am just the slightest bit sad the innocence of his youth is fading fast . . . and that at 10 years old he doesn't have much time left under my care.

I love who he is becoming and will make every effort to enjoy every day of the next 8 years . . . it will go all too fast . . .

and more tears . . .

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