Last week my son, D, promoted from elementary school. From 5th grade to 6th grade.
I now have a middle schooler.
I can't believe how fast time is flying. I have always been keenly aware of how fast it goes. I remember still being in the hospital with him after he was born, and he was 3 days old---and being upset that he was already 3 days old. THREE DAYS! I wanted to capture every moment, every memory.
And now he's 11. And going off to middle school.
He is growing up to be, in one word, phenomenal. I'm so proud of the person he's becoming. He's kind and empathic and fun and so interesting to talk to. I mean, really interesting. He is now a junior black belt in karate, and plays guitar, and now plays sax in the school band, and runs 5ks (and has even done a 10k) and does triathlon. He reads books way beyond his grade level, and asks me the most interesting, thought-provoking questions.
I'm so proud of the relationship I've fostered with him. When A was born, and was in the hospital for several months, D was only 2. Before she was born, he was my world. Wherever I went, he went, and vice versa. I was so in love! I made a conscious decision when A was born that I didn't want him to feel second best---he needed me too! So even when she was in the hospital, and I'd spend all morning in the NICU (he would either be at preschool camp or a friend's house or home if a relative was visiting) but I was with him all afternoon, through bedtime, and then I'd go back to the hospital. All through his childhood, I used any nursing hours I received to spend time with him. And though our nursing days are long over (thank goodness!) we still spend lots of time together. We see plays and musicals, we go to museums, we run, and I still read to him every night (we recently finished the Hunger Game series, and have now started on the Divergent trilogy). We have plans in a few years to run his first half marathon together (a destination trip, I promised him!)
Recently I asked him if he ever felt left out because of A's medical needs. He said no---and when I told him I had strived to make him feel that way, he said mission accomplished. Ah, I love that boy!
Now he goes to middle school. He's becoming a man. Yes, he's still a little boy, but not really...he's growing up right before my eyes. He's still a cuddle and loves to snuggle with me at night----just not in public! I'm dreading the day that he doesn't want to cuddle with me anymore, but for now, I savor each one.
I'm excited for him, and a bit worried too. Three of his six classes next year will be accelerated (GATE for English and Social Studies, and a compacted math class [a year and a half of math in one year]). Plus Science, PE and band. It'll be culture shock to him, but I guess it was for me too, back in the day, going into middle school. He'll be ok. He'll navigate it all---academically, socially, and emotionally.
Ah, D. I love that boy. I just cherish him so much.....and although he's growing up too quickly, I am also loving watching him develop into the man he is becoming.
Safety First (and second and third)
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