I remember my first day of kindergarten. Not the entire day, but the most difficult part. I was spoiled rotten by my grandparents. I lived with them. They did everything for me. I remember walking downstairs of my now torn down elementary school. It was dark and musty. I remember I was the last one in the hallway with my grandmother and my mom. Mrs. Ritterbush said it was time to go. I didn’t want to and my grandma had a hard time letting go. The argument those two got into is one of my first clear memories. But I remember walking into the room after calming down and I met some of my best friends I’d have for years to come.
Tomorrow it’s our turn to walk our son to school. It doesn’t seem real. It doesn’t seem like we would ever get to this point as a parent. All we ever had to worry about before was making sure he had enough to eat, he was learning a little bit, and he was having fun along the way. I think we’ve provided him all of those things and a little more. I know he’s ready. Ready to make life long friends and learn and grow and become a little closer to becoming a man.
that’s what scares me. It’s the letting go. Knowing that this is a huge step forward towards growing up. To him becoming a strong, smart man who, Lord willing, becomes twice the man I am.
It’s funny. When I was young, I couldn’t wait to grow up. To find out what being an adult was like. To have freedom to do whatever the hell I wanted to do. To not give three and a half shits what anyone thought about what I did and how I did it. But now I would give anything to slow down time. To cherish each moment a little more. Each second that passes is another second we won’t get back. I’ve wasted a lot of seconds in my life. I can’t get them back.
But what I can do is take each second and fight for each one. To make each f*cking second count. To help my sons grow up and at least get them in the direction of the path.
At some point, it’s going to be time to let go and let them pick their own path. For now, I’ll enjoy holding their hands along the way.
Tomorrow, I’ll have to loosen that grip a bit. I know it’ll be harder for me than for him.
I’m just glad I’m here. To be a part of it. to help give them a better story.
Give um hell tomorrow, Jack-a-roo! I’m so g’damn proud of you! You’re going to absolutely kill it. Your laugh and your smile will be contagious. Those girls have no idea what they’re getting into. (just no chasing them on the playground trying to kiss them like daddy. sitting on the window sill during recess is no fun!)
I love you buddy. Go off and grow. “What will your verse be?”