From not being able to roll his body over to releasing him on his own equipped with only a backpack full of clothes and food, tomorrow will be my little man’s first day of school. Preschool montessori style, but school nonetheless.
His younger years are moving so quickly. It’s a crazy concept especially against the backdrop of seeming like forever before his bedtime every night. Relativity in it’s finest form I suppose.
It’s a crazy thing watching a person’s entire life experiences unfold before your eyes. It’s a whole other thing to watch and be responsible for everything that unfolds in front of his. And after all the learned colors, cleaned up bodily fluids, potty trips, Kanye West dance-a-longs, spilled drinks, food messes, time outs, pediatric visits, Super Why! episodes, counting numbers, mother meltdowns, and father trip ups, he’s gaining more and more independence every single day.
It scares me to think how much faster time is going to tick away.
I applaud his new found sense of self and freedom. I’m reluctant to share the caretaker responsibility with others I don’t even know yet. How are their kids doing? How’s their family life? Have they managed to permanently damage another human being’s psyche yet? If so, have they learned any damn thing from it? So many questions.
But like my son, I have to step away on faith and hope the last few years he’s spent with us gives him all he needs to face the next few uncertain years.
[Specifically for my son, if you ever get a chance to read this:]
The day before your first day of school, today, your mom and I took you to South Congress Avenue on Easter Sunday. Unlike many others families, we never saw the inside of a church on this romanticized day. Instead, you slept deeply and unusually long during your nap, and your mom feverishly cooked and prepped for your upcoming big day. You would think your mother didn’t have her own big day at her first day at her new job tomorrow as well.
On the way to the Austin iconic South Congress, as always, you pointed out every single H.E.B. supermarket with your trademark yell of “H.E.BEEEEEE!” which could always be easily heard over whatever jam we had playing – this time, I think it was Rihanna or Childish Gambino. We discovered that TOM’s shoes opened up a very respectable coffee shop by the name of TOM’s Roasting Co. You ran enthusiastically up and down their ramp for the physically disabled.
After our delicious coffee which you stole many sips at our dismay, you enjoyed an authentic Jamaican beef patty from the awesome food truck across the street. I didn’t get her name, but the owner loved you. So much so, she gave you some free chicken, plantains, and even a free CapriSun drink. Then you proceeded to kill the jerk chicken, peas, and rice your mother and I shared.
Afterwards you, your mother and I all hiked to the top of Mount Bonnell, considered to be the highest point in Austin. We enjoyed the view and you wanted to veer to close to cliff ledge more times than once. Once again, we had to save your life pretty much.
Once we got home, I gave you a bubble bath where you spent a good amount of time trying to eat the bubbles. You laughed. Your mother left for the gym and we watched a few minutes of TV together while you drunk your nightcap of vanilla almond milk. I tickled you when you went to bed and you told me ‘night night’ before I hit the lights.
It was a good day. And if you’re reading this, I hope your day is going as well as it did the day before your first day of school.