It's almost here.
The day that I have been dreading for over 6,500 days.
According to my living room table I have taken no less than two pictures each day in preparation for this one. At this point an attempt to organize them seems futile - and if I'm being completely honest counter-intuitive. I'd rather spend time with the actual kid - not the ghosts of kodak. Because let's be real - this ain't no celebration.
I mean, the kid did the bare minimum of what society asks somebody with his capabilities to do: learn enough to function and participate in society. OK, yeah, let's give him a pat on the back and all, it might even be cake worthy - but let's be real:
No - this isn't a celebration.
As a matter of fact - I'm not sure what it is. I'm not scared for him - he's a great kid, with a good plan, and a strong support system. I'm proud of him, and who he is, but not overly impressed just because he aces a math test or writes a killer history paper.
I'm sad. Mostly sad. And yes, I know this is what is supposed to happen in life, and I know that I would be much sadder if he weren't the kind of kid who was capable of heading out to do great things.
But dammit, I'm going to miss him.
I'm going to miss showtunes emanating from the shower every night, the way he kisses his little sister's forehead every time he walks in the door. I'll miss late night cocoa with him, and his all-too-accurate impersonations of everyone at the diner table. I'll miss watching him on stage, and signing his permission forms and hugging him goodnight and walking in to see what he's doodling at his desk. I already miss making pirate treasure maps with him and bedtime stories, and lunchbox notes, and now I will be missing even more.
Maybe that's what a graduation party is. It's not a celebration. It's parents shaking the world by the shoulders with 13,467 photos, a rootbeer keg and 200 gas station donuts saying, "Look at this kid - isn't he funny? Isn't he kind? Isn't he a great piece of work for this world?!" And then silently begging the world to take care of them, to love them as much as we do, to chew them up just enough, but never spit them out.