Oh, Middle School, I was so scared of you. I've been scared of you since Peyton first walked through the door to kindergarten. Puberty, eighth graders, changing classes, and extra homework loomed over my head for 6 years before Peyton even stepped foot on the middle school campus. I may be shooting myself in the foot, but so far, I've been so, so pleasantly surprised.
Peyton has walked out the front door every morning so far with nary a complaint. He has walked home every day and not once called me to come pick him up halfway. HE CLEANED HIS ROOM this past weekend and it looked as good as when I did it. He's gotten his homework done without a fight. I should have sent him to middle school YEARS ago!
The first day of school was rougher on me than him. I had gotten up early to take Shey to school, so I could walk him to his class, and as I was pulling into the driveway, Peyton was already outside, dressed, with his friends ready to take off. I sputtered, "Did dad take your picture?" Yes. "Do you have your lunch?" Yes. "Did you eat breakfast?" No, but I'm ok. "No, wait here, I'll get you some money."
Anything to slow down his leaving for just a minute, so I had time to process.
I stood there in the driveway, watching him walk out of the cul-de-sac and an unexpected wave hit me. The tears welled up and I fought the urge to get into the car and follow him. I've been dropping him with others since he was 12 weeks old, but watching him walk away, seemingly all grown up, broke my heart a little. It was a huge reminder that my time with Peyton living in my house is on the downward slope. I've been so wrapped up in caring for a newborn, baby, then toddler, that he's matured without hardly a notice. I've got to get better at that.
I know middle school won't be all fun and games and life will be difficult at times, but I know we can get through it together.