I know that I am breaking some unwritten law of parenthood by writing about this, and I offer no defense except to say that it’s a milestone that’s weighing more heavily and bittersweet on my heart than I would have imagined, and so I write, because that’s what I do.
It’s been coming for a while, but the time is now pretty much upon us. Last night, Michael told Kevin that it’s time for him to shave. I feel like crying just writing that! Yes, yes, I’ve watched that fuzzy shadow on his upper lip become more and more prominent, even zooming in on a recent photo of him in iPhoto to get a better look (because god knows he’s not actually going to let me get close enough to get that good a look in person), and great balls of fire! There are distinctive whiskers sprinkled up there! But still, he’s blond-ish and fair, and only 15, so I really thought shaving might still be a way off for him.
When Michael told me that he told Kevin it’s time, my stomach knotted up a bit. I’m serious! This is my first baby. His first steps, first day of school, first time riding a bike sans training wheels all seem like yesterday – and those were bittersweet for me. Now all signs point to the fact that he is, indeed, on the brink of manhood, and there is no going back – no turning back the clock and putting him in little footie pajamas, no snuggling him on my lap for The Runaway Bunny, no reaching out for him to hold my hand as we cross a street or parking lot. Time marches on, and babies grow up and become men and women.
I am thankful, however, that this young man still hugs his mama, and still wants her to tuck him in at night.