And, finally the day arrived and you were ready.
Again you tried to act above it all but I knew you needed some kisses and you didn’t stop me. I wanted to stay longer, to make a bigger deal but your demeanor said “I’m ok Mom; you can let go.” so I gave you a little hug, a wave and left you there.
Daddy and I walked that ever-familiar path back home and it seemed so surreal that for the first time you weren’t with. Thinking about how I will now be walking that path back home every day by myself started up some tears. Who will chase the birds, ask what the gophers under our feet are doing right now (“Are they watching gopher TV, Mama?” “Are they playing gopher Candyland?” “Maybe they’re taking gopher bath with LOTS of bubbles!”) or hold my hand when we cross the street?
It wasn’t until sometime during lunch that you really opened up. You told us all kinds of fun details about your day: your teacher gave you each…”you know those little doughnut things Grandma used to get us…ohhh, doughnut holes!” and yours had the MOST sprinkles, you finally learned what this ‘crisscross apple sauce business your brother has been talking about and you got both music AND library (you got to bang a drum in music class and made sure to look through your book about silly gooses to make sure it was right for you before you checked it out) and went down the slide “a lot” on recess. You played with your friends, helped another friend hang up her backpack (being tall is an advantage sometimes), and even learned some new names. But, most of all you had FUN.