In just a few short days, I will walk my precious son to his kindergarten classroom.
I know I can’t go in, so I’ll stop before we get there and crouch down to study his face, so sweet and anxious. I’ll tell him how very proud I am. I’ll tell him I know he’ll do an amazing job — he’ll be a good friend, and listen to his teacher, and he’ll explore a whole new world. And I’ll promise to meet him in that very spot, just as soon as the school day is over.
He’ll need a hug, and he’ll cling to me. After all, he’s been right by my side for the better part of his life.
But somehow, some way, I’ll have to let him go.
I’ll have to let him walk through that door, pushing back my irrational fear that it’s like his own personal wardrobe to Narnia.
My fear that wild and dangerous things will happen to him on the other side.
That he’ll have to be remarkably courageous.
And that he’ll face it all alone.
And that somehow, at the end of that very same day, he’ll return to the door… all grown up.
And that’s when it’ll hit me like a brick to the mama gut.
“This is it!” my panicked heart will shout. “This is the very moment.”
This is the exact point in time I have dreaded all his life. This is the one I’ve been pushing back in my heart — the one I’ve been wishing away in my mind. Somehow, I think I’ve been holding my breath since the minute he was born.
Because as soon as he walks through that door, his time as a little boy will officially come to a close.
And I truly know what a privilege it is to raise a growing boy. Every second, I’m thankful for it.
It’s just… as soon as they lose the littleness, there’s no more slowing down. There’s only ‘going faster.’
And I’m never gonna be ready.
I’m never gonna be ready for the inevitability of missing things. Missing the parts of his life I just can’t be there for anymore. Once few and far between, the ‘missing’ will become more and more the norm as he grows up.
The first day of kindergarten will turn into sleepovers in junior high. Driver’s ed one day. College.
And then I’ll find myself waiting impatiently for photos of his own sweet baby’s very first day of kindergarten.
That’s the way it’s supposed to be.
And gosh, it’s a beautiful thing. A beautiful, extraordinary, painful thing… but that’s life.
And it’s time for my little boy’s BIG life to begin.
In just a few short days.