To My Bright and Handsome Son, on Your First Day of School

Early this morning I had to tip-toe carefully across a bedroom floor covered in toys, random paper and rumpled clothes. I relied upon your gentle snoring to find you among the stuffed animals and extra blankets on your bed. I was a few minutes earlier than usual because we needed a little more time to get ready. It is a special day for you. Today is your first day of school.

It seems like forever since you first arrived to me, all blue and yelling. In between that day and today you have brought more joy than I could have ever imagined. When I see you laying in bed soundly snoozing, I see every memory I have of you, all of those special years at once.

I hesitate to wake you because it feels like if I do you will suddenly grow up and no longer want to hold my hand when we walk through parking lots. When you put on that backpack and walk into your first classroom it means you won’t chase me around the playground anymore, or ask me to carry you, or help me with everything. If I stay quiet for just a few minutes more, you will remain my little boy.

So, I sat down and rested with you for a while, mostly to allow myself to relax and enjoy what happens today. There is the other part of me that has been waiting for this moment for a very long time. I am elated to be the one to start your day, knowing today you finally get your chance to be in a classroom, learning about the world, about other people, and yourself. You will make so many friends and have your own experiences to share with your family at the end of each school day.

You will be sharing your school experience with your sister, of course, and here is something I need you to know: when you are at school, you are family. She may drive you nuts at home with her pestering and her controlling behavior, but at school you have each others’ backs. Do not reject her, do not tease her or put her down in front of anyone. Be the supportive brother she needs and she will always be there for you.

Here we are this morning ready to begin. It’s your turn, Duncan. My wish for you is for your school experience to be as good or better than mine. I know you will be an amazing student.

Wake up, my dear son. It’s time to go to school.


September 11, 2017 at 1:02 pm 3 comments

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