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Comparing Memories

Remember when my water broke and we were driving to the hospital and we decided it would be a good time to pick a name for our baby boy? You wanted Mason but I knew all along it would be Kaleb. And you decided on the 'K' because Kay was my middle name and you thought something out of the ordinary would be good.

You also suggested that his middle name be the same as my father.

Do you remember that night as well as I do? Do you remember loading the jogging stroller out of pure nervousness, not even thinking, aint no one gonna be jogging at the hospital after just having a baby.

I was cool, calm and collected during that drive. Do you remember that? I rode as calmly in the passenger seat as I would have, had we'd been going for ice cream.

Do you remember bringing Kaleb home for the first time, thinking the most important thing to do first, was to introduce him to Molly so she wouldn't be jealous? Do you remember sitting on the floor in our room, letting her smell him and realizing she didn't give a damn about some baby we were bringing home, she wanted to know where her

treat was.

What parts do you remember? What parts of us bringing our little man into the world do you remember most vividly? I'm sure it was the screaming and crying that took place on my end during that whole "I don't need an epidural" debacle. We should have talked about that day more often; we should have compared our notes as to who remembered what. We should have.

I know you see me tonight. You see me sitting here, crying. I know you also saw me earlier today when I told Kaleb, out of pure annoyance and frustration, that I was so ready for him to start school this week because I couldn't stand another day of this summer boredom.

I've been counting down the days for school to start for at least the last 28 days. I'm irritated with all the whining and all the questions. I need to have a schedule back and so does he. It's time for more structure and less sun. It's time for books and less iPad. It's time for well balanced meals and less mac&cheese for breakfast. It's time, and boy am I ready.

Or am I?

When I get him dressed for his first day of big boy school, there will be parts that I'll remember forever; just like the jogging stroller or meeting Molly for the first time. When I take his picture on the front porch with him holding his chalkboard sign and begging him to smile, surely there will be a moment that sticks in my brain forever. When I walk him into school for the first time and I watch him find his backpack hook or I watch him find his name taped on the desk, those moments will grab me and I'll remember them forever.

I know he's not starting kindergarten yet, I know it's just Pre-K but it's a change. It's growth for both of us. It's going from daycare to real school. It's having lunch in a cafeteria with older kids. It's going to a separate classroom for art class or computer lab. It's being responsible for putting away your own nap mat. It's leaving George and Blankie behind in the car because they aren't allowed in the classroom. It's all those big huge things for our little sweet boy and suddenly, I'm a mess thinking about how you won't be here to see it all.

We won't get to drop him off together and then scurry out to the parking lot to discuss every moment that just took place in the 5 minutes we were standing there before he told us to leave. We won't get to talk about this day 12 years from now when we're dropping him off at college. We won't get to tell each other what we remember about his first day of Pre-K.

As much as I'm so ready for him to start, and as much as I know it's going to be a great thing for him, I'm sad that he doesn't have both of us here. I'm sad that these memories are only mine.

He's a lucky kid though, because he has the ability to have you with him all day in a way I can't be there.

so....I'll handle the drop-off and pick-up if you can handle the rest of the day. We'll meet again one day and compare

our notes.


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