Our summer was a quiet one, this year. By quiet, I mean not so busy. We didn't go anywhere. We stayed close to home and swam. A lot. My eldest doesn't enjoy swimming, so for the most part, it was Alex and I. A lot of that time was just the two of us. I have to admit, I went as often as I could just to be able to spend time with him. Sometimes his friends came along, and that was great. His friends are great kids. Funny, smart... a lot of fun to be around. Still, those days where it was just the two of us; priceless.
Alex is a funny kid. Wickedly funny. Ask any of his teachers, and they will tell you not only how much they enjoy him in class, but love his sense of humor and love that he uses it, appropriately. One teacher told us that he needs to do stand-up comedy. I know I'm biased, but I could sit and listen to him all day long! I have!
He and I have our very own language, if you will. While I know Alex would not mind if I shared examples of this, I think it's best to keep that between us. It is something that has evolved over many years. It is almost second nature, now. We do have this other thing that we do - all the time. If, for example, I serve chicken (his absolute favorite) for supper, he'll say something like,
"Wow. This chicken is so good! It's so crunchy and light." He'll look at me. He knows - and I know - what's coming. I'll say:
"Light and crunchy?" He'll nod then add:
"Yes. Lrunchy." I'll giggle and add:
"Cright." He'll continue:
This game, if you will, happens at least four times a day, no matter what is being discussed. It usually ends with us laughing so hard that we are wiping tears, and always with a hug. He hugs me a lot. I'm a very lucky woman: Both of my sons still hug me. Both of my sons still kiss me goodbye when they go out... even in front of their friends. Did I say I was a lucky woman?
Alex and I spent a lot of time drawing together. When friends were busy or away, we'd get pens and paper and draw. Those are some of my favorite moments with him. While we draw, we talk about a lot of different things. I am amazed at how political he is. How in tune he is with the world around him. I love hearing his opinions. Some we share. Some, we don't. I learn a lot from him. I learned that he likes to hang out with me, almost as much as he likes to hang out with friends. To hear him say, "Ma, I not only love you; I like you, too." No words. Tears.
My youngest son will begin his second junior year in the morning. Yes, I said second. He struggled quite a bit last year, and after doing a lot of thinking, he has chosen to try it again. This was not an easy decision for him, and I am very proud of him. He could have chosen to be a senior, but thinks of this as a second chance; a gift. Not many kids would view repeating a grade as a second chance. Like I said, I'm so proud of him. He's not ashamed. He does not view this as 'failing' a grade. My kids do things differently; they always have, and for that, I couldn't be happier as their mother.
Tomorrow, I will send my baby off to school with a heavy, yet excited heart. It's a brand-new start. I look forward to hearing all about it. It take me a few days myself to get back into the routine of school. Early mornings. New rules. I will also get to spend some time with my eldest son, one on one, too. He is home and waiting for GED scores. He feels good about it, with a tinge of dread regarding the math parts, but even that he thinks he did okay with. He'll be going off to college soon. Winter.
So, yes; we had a great summer. A lazy, casual, stay-cation if you will. I am sad to see it come to an end. I have spoken to so many parents that are saying, "I'm so glad the kids are finally going back" I have never felt that way! Am I the only parent that dreads it? No, it's not the "Most Wonderful Time of the Year." I happen to love having my kids around. I love a house-full of kids. That's certainly not to say that all the other parents do NOT love having their kids around. But, I have never been one to be glad that they are gone. Let me stop before I get myself into trouble!
Alex: Happy New School Year, kiddo! I'll be here when you get home.