This morning I said goodbye to my almost adults on their first day of school. I didn’t make any lunches, tie any shoes, pack any snacks, label any supplies or dry any tears. I didn’t pick out an outfit, fill out any forms or fix anyone’s hair.
Oh, don’t get me wrong, I tried. My attempts were quickly scoffed at and I was even given a little head tilted, crooked-smiled pity glance by my 16-year-old when I asked if he had all that he needed. It was becoming annoyingly clear…I was just an observer this morning.
So, I made a cup of coffee and took to the sidelines. They made coffee, toaster waffles, compared schedules and chatted about the day to come. They made sure one of them, at least, had house keys and even confirmed each others’ after-school schedules. The boys gave their younger sister tips and facts about her new teachers. All without me, as I sat sadly taking in their morning mom-free ritual.
They were nice enough to allow for my traditional out-the-door photo shoot, first one was fine….but then they would be off like the wind, so another pose here…and maybe one here. They didn’t complain. They stood, arms around one another, clean, dressed well and happy. They were prepared, healthy and ready for the day, maybe even the year.
I took the last shot before I let them go, knowing that this was my eldest son’s last first day of high school and holding back an ugly cry, I put the camera down.
With a big bear hug from each of them, they were off down the block, disappearing around the corner. I did my slow, sad walk back towards the front door when I saw it. There on the bench was THE FORGOTTEN CLARINET.
So I picked it up and started towards the bus stop. A little embarrassed by how much I loved that little glimmer of “they still need me! They really do” but whatever.
He was already on his way back to get it. I met him halfway.
I am a firm believer in the fact that everything happens for a reason. Some of those things take years, like raising a child to be independent enough to take care of things themselves. Then there are things like the forgotten clarinet, that take seconds to happen, but remind you that they will always need you and that your role as mom will be forever precious to you, and them.
Happy First Day of School, Moms!