Friday, April 10, 2015

Slowly Letting Go

Two and a half years ago, my husband gave me a stern warning on the eve of the day our eldest son left for three days away at camp for "outdoor education." He said that our 10 year old fifth grader would come back a completely different person. I was truly apprehensive, but that didn't really happen, although my husband did say that Kelvin didn't want to give daddy a hug when he went to pick him up. The process was much more gradual.

Kelvin is now 13 and he has been on a second outdoor ed, he spent a full week away traveling with the bell choir last spring (during which he called me exactly 4 times with this new cell phone), and now, he's not only going to travel for a week with the bells once more, but fly across the country with the robotics team to compete in California!

This past Fall, his 10-year-old brother went to his first outdoor ed and both of them are going to be away for two days at a music festival starting this afternoon (the reason for this post!). It still feels strange to have the house all to ourselves, or with only one child (for now, L should join the bell choir next year), but it's good practice to the empty nest that's a few years down the road!

My own parents allowed me and my brother, aged 12 and 9 travel for a few days with a choir back in 1983, and those trips were very memorable. Most importantly, I will never forget my first long trip with our band in my freshman year of high school, back in 1987. It was an amazing trip to the state of Goiás in Brazil that included a visit to the country's capital (Brasília, my first time there) and my first (and so far only time) at this amazing hot springs resort called "Pousada do Rio Quente" (Hot River Inn).

Going back to that resort, that now has a water park (Hot Park) and an artificial hot water beach, is one of the items in my bucket list!

Later on I/we had many unforgettable trips with our choir, but this wasn't meant to be a post about me, it's about my children and I'm going to end it in a bittersweet note (having spent most of the day today [Thursday] writing his post).

At 10 pm the phone rang. It was my 10 year old, calling from his teachers's phone. His first words to me?

"Mom, I didn't want to be here! I don't like it!  It's crazy! It's 10 o'clock and the kids are still going crazy!"

My dear boy. Always doing everything in such a proper way! He basically takes himself to bed every night at the same time, only calling me to tuck him in.

I could hear the noise of the other kids in the background, but my husband told me that I needed to be reassuring and not to pity him, protective "mama hen" style, so I did. I told him that everything would be ok and that eventually the kids would quiet down and he would be able to go to sleep. I hope he did and I'll know how it went tomorrow night. He already asked to spend the night with us at my aunt's house, but maybe by tomorrow he'll have changed his mind. Let's see!

Two years ago when we got there on Friday Kelvin acted pretty "cool" towards us, only happy to see us because his air mattress was deflated and we'd brought him another one. 

I hope my younger son will be feeling better tomorrow night! I'll let you know! Yeah... Letting go, like parenting in general, is definitely not for the faint of heart! 

1 comment:

Heidi said...

I've been on countless tours when people are noisy, staying up late. I always wish I could carry a sign that says, "Morning people of the world revolt" and form a picket line in protest. I'm sure it wouldn't do any good, and I'm sure he'll come home ready for a quiet and normal bed time. I always do. :)