Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Picking You Up in the Sunshine

Today I dropped you off at daycare. It was 90 degrees. I knew this afternoon you would get to play outside after your nap. When I picked you up everyone would be outside playing in the sunshine. I looked forward to this moment all day long. As I drove in an hour in traffic listening to NPR. As I gave a school tour to 5th graders who will be attending middle school next year. As I fixed computers, meet with teachers, wrote emails, made calls. All I wanted to do was pick you up and see your smiling face in the sun. I had to leave work by 3:30pm in order to pick you up on time. 3:05pm came then a phone call, then a visit, then a delivery, then a meeting with the principal. Soon it was 3:35pm. I thought, I can still make it! I have to leave NOW!

Then there he was sitting in the principals office. A 7th grade student I do not know that well. He has a "reputation" among the staff. He needed help on a project. No one could stay after to help him. Our principal would but it was her son's 7th birthday and she had to get home for the celebration dinner. I had to get home to pick you up, outside in the sunshine. He needed someone. Someone to sit with him and help him on his project. It's also well known among the staff that this 7th grade student does not have the best home life. You have a great home life. Someone to love you, fix you dinner, play with you in the sun & blow bubbles in the bathtub. This boy does not.

So I called Reidun to ask her to pick you up in the sunshine. As Reidun went to get you, I sat in a hot computer lab next to a student I barely know. I watched, I helped, I encouraged, I taught... I missed you. I missed you in the sunshine. I missed you walking in the grass barefoot, I missed playing ball in the backyard. But I don't regret my decision. I pray I will be blessed with lots of sunshine pick ups outside this summer. I hope that my efforts today will help another child feel appreciated and smart. I have to make decisions as your mommy. I cannot be there for every moment, every pick up, every field trip or project. But I know that someone will be there. Someone in our large village will take over when I can't.

I wish I could do it all.

I did get to visit the Inner Harbor and National Aquarium with you yesterday in Baltimore. All the experience, culture and fun... and you loved the moving sidewalks the best. You would become thrilled whenever it was time to get on one. It would end and you would immediately turn around to jump on again, resulting in tripping some unexpected tourist, who I would then have to apologize too. Although you became crabby toward the end of the day and passed out the moment we got into the car, I enjoyed being with you. Today I could not be with you since I was at work. Tomorrow I want to start again and hopefully if all goes according to plan, I will be able to pick you up in the sunshine. I count on the chance for tomorrow far too much.

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