Having worked in the schools, I have always been entranced with that moment that occurs when a parent picks a child up from school -- there is such a range of emotion or lack thereof.
Some kids run to mom or dad with arms wide up and smooches at-the-ready. Some wander over, dragging their feet, silently switching to the custody of the next big person.
I love that moment. It speaks volumes about the general health of the relationship, tinged by the events of that particular day.
What were today's pick-up reactions?
Aee (this reaction was my favorite for today): "MOM! (actually screaming) MY FEET CAN TOUCH MY BUM!!"
She takes off running across the playground, all her belongings flying. Her coat flies off to the right, backpack flies off to the left, miscellaneous papers in all directions. Wow, she really can touch her bum with her feet when she kicks her legs back hard.
Jee's approach: Puts his belongings in his backpack fast. Papers, books, coat, all crammed in the backpack. He turns his sweet little face up to me and I see a bandaid on his cheek. I can also see that his eyes carry a bit too much sadness in them so I don't ask what happened. When we get home, I'll ask and he'll cry and let me know what happened. (A mean kid was throwing sticks and one hit him as he was walking out of a room. Jee understands the luck factor in the near miss and to him it is not just a little scratch. He tells me how much he loves his eyes. I love his eyes too.)
Vee's end of the school day contact: Phone message, "Hey, mom, hope you had a good day. Do you need us for anything after school? My test went well. I think I did good on it... (more details). Love you mom." Holy cow, did he just say that in front of his friends?? Yup, I listen to the message again and hear his friends voices in the background. From what I have seen of Vee's friends, they're all self-confident enough to not be threatened by a friend making such a comment (if by chance they happened to overhear it).
Kee's end of the school day contact: Calling after he & his bro get home (I had the others at karate). "Hey mom, we're home. Should I get some water boiling?" He knows that all good dinners are on the other end of a boiling pot of water.
Sigh. I love that: "MY FEET CAN TOUCH MY BUM!" If you haven't run so fast & furious that your feet touch your bum, I highly recommend it. Vee and I went out for a run tonight and felt like we were five again, running in all sorts of spastic Gumby-like ways. Thankfully, it was fully dark out and no one saw us (I hope).