If you want to feel really sad, put your first born on the bus for the first time to Kindergarten and wave good-bye. Sigh . . . That's what I did this morning and I have to say that although I thought I was prepared, you are never really prepared for your children to grow up.
My 5 year old and I have both been excited about him starting his new school this fall. We've been preparing all summer and we were ready. We visited his school and met his teachers. We shopped together for new clothes, shoes, and school supplies. And, we talked about what his days would be like being a "big kid" riding a bus and staying for the afternoon. The days leading up to the start of school we picked out his first day outfit and went grocery shopping for lunches. We really were ready. He was super excited and literally bouncing off of furniture last night. And I was feeling calm; like this was all just a natural progression.
But as we stood there this morning waiting for the bus it started to bother me. The bus was running late and I think I had too much time to think. As I stood there, taking picture after picture of my little boy, looking through the camera at him I realized that he isn't so little anymore. And then he showed me that he has two loose teeth. I suddenly had this overwhelming sense that something big is changing here. Its not that this moment now being here is a surprise; I don't honestly feel like it was just yesterday that he was an infant. But I do feel like the years have started to blur. What if all of elementary school is just a big blur from this "big" moment on? That's what started to tug on my heart. That it could all move at a lightning speed pace from here on and him being a child could be over in a flash.
So, I think my heart broke just a little bit this morning. It was a happy moment, but sad. I tried to focus on the happy and he was so happy to be waiting with his big backpack for the big bus. I didn't cry and I didn't tell him I would miss him while he was gone. But he sensed it, or maybe he was feeling just a little bit of the moment too. He looked straight into my eyes before the bus pulled up and said, "You know Mom, I will always be your little 'Love', no matter how big I get". Well, that was it, I just about lost it then. But still, I smiled. Having my grown up 5 year old say something so meaningful to me at just the right moment made it a happy heartbreak.