I watch, sitting on the front porch, with my neighbor, as my baby plays. Naive, foolish and happily clueless about the number of times I would let go of my precious baby the rest of my life – each time for a bit longer, and a bit farther away.

He’s 5. And is begging to go around the block, by himself, on his bike. I let him, my heart in my mouth until I see a mile-wide smile plastered on his beautiful face back around the corner.

He is 6. I drop him off at school, walking with him all the way to his class. Is that a lump in my throat as I walk back and, is it raining?

He is in 2nd grade. I drop him off at school, and watch as he walks in all by himself, barely looking back.

He is 8, and is going to ride the school bus. Our days of profound, silly, funny, and sometimes-confessional car talks are coming to an end. I become the crazy mom who follows the school bus on the first day of school, every year.

He’s in 7th grade and is off to Washington, DC for a leadership conference. We pack his suitcase together, planning every outfit. The days he’s gone are a hazy memory. He comes back, having had the best time, and with the biggest smile ever. I’m proud. And happy it’s over. For now.

He is 17, and is off to college—only a couple of hours away. The couch is my best friend. Does it ever get easier?

His sophomore summer, he drives from Florida to Indiana on a summer road trip. My gift to him. He comes back safe, happy and with a tattoo. (I’m curiously proud of what he chose: an image that combines his Japanese best friend’s family icon and the lion from India’s national emblem). Our relationship seems to have turned a corner. No more angry teen-frustrated mom conversations.

He is 21, and is off for a summer internship. In Baltimore. Two weeks after the riots. The days we spend before he leaves are a crazy mix of laughter, food, unshed tears, my moods, panic, and conversations that run deep. My unraveling is not pretty, and upsets him terribly.

The wings are stronger and the flights longer. But I sense the roots are getting deeper too.

To my sunshine, the one who always makes me feel better no matter what’s wrong.

I love you.


2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Stacy Swanger Morton
    May 23, 2015 @ 21:05:41

    Sniff, sniff. You mean the “angry teen” is eventually replaced??? *Hope*

    Liked by 1 person


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s