This morning JMumbo woke up in his normal way, ready and full of possibility for what the day would bring. It is summer time, when all things are possible, the days are so long you could go to China and back during them, and the sun never stops shining. He is milking this season, more than in year’s past, really enjoying it.
The summer recreation program is in full swing and this morning they were making snakes. I have no idea what that means, but JMumbo was ready for anything that involves slithery creatures. With ten minutes to spare, he gulped down a Pop-Tart and got dressed. Then the moment arrived. He has been asking to ride his bike down for a few days on his own. He will be ten in a few weeks and the park is less than a mile from our house, basically around the corner. There is one road to cross that might be busy, but he knows to stop and look there. I have been holding out because as big a step as this is for him, it is a bigger one for mom. I want him to be independent, to be in charge of his life, but it means letting go of my little boy. This morning I did.
He was excited and I think proud. His helmet on, he swung his leg over the bike and said, “See you when rec is over.” With that he pushed off and out of the garage. I watched him glide down the driveway and begin to pump the pedals, and the tears popped up in my eyes. My little boy looked so grown up. He’s still a kid, still cuddles with his mom, and wants to be read to at night, but I am watching him transition into that between world. It sounds silly, but the snapshots really do flip through your head. My baby boy who always had a hug for his mom and loved nothing more than to spend the day with me headed out on his own.
If this is how it feels to watch him ride his bike down the street for the first time, how will I ever survive HS graduation and college?