A Little Wave · 3 May 2007

On my way to work one day, I dropped off our oldest son, Zachary, at the front door of Monroe High School. He is a freshman but could not take the bus as usual because he needed to be at school early to take a make up test. As he walked toward the doors, he did not stop to look back and wave as he would have done as a child. Even though there was nobody there to witness him wave or show any type of affection, he did not look back once he turned away from the car. He just got his backpack and soccer bag and walked away. He just went to school. Without even a quick backward glance.

As the main male role model in our family, I realize that I am supposed to help my sons cut the apron strings of their mother that they have firmly grasped. I am supposed to help make them independent. I am supposed to help them get to a point where they can leave and not need to look back. Even so, that morning I wanted a little wave. I wanted my little boy back. The one who would have given me a hug after I walked him to the door and then waved as he walked away down the hall.

Just don’t tell my wife, Lisa, that is what I wanted. She would just say, “See, you want them to stay little too.” But she is only partially right.

Lisa is the mother. She is the nurturer. She wants them to get big but not too fast. She wants them to stop relying on her but not too quickly. Yet each day, it is apparent that our kids are growing up too fast. It seems that just yesterday Zachary was in preschool even though he is already a freshman in high school. A freshman who does not really want to publicly acknowledge that his parents exist except as a taxi service and a cheerleading squad. A freshman who does not kiss his mother goodbye when he leaves for school in the morning. A freshman who his mother fears does not really need her anymore.

Dropping Zachary off at the high school early in the morning was a poignant moment for me because it was a vision of what is yet to come. He will continue to rely on us, his parents, less and less as time goes on. I know that Zachary will continue to grow up and then he will move out and start a life of his own. I just hope that when he does, he turns around and waves at his mom and me every once in a while.

© 2007 Michael T. Miyoshi

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Published 29 May 2007 in The Monroe Monitor & Valley News


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