One of the best parts of my day is the short walk to my younger son’s daycare each morning. One of the worst parts of my day is when their front door closes with him on the other side.
I walk with the happiest, chattiest kid on Broadway. But as soon as we enter his classroom, his smile flatlines. He clams up and gently clings my leg.
He’s past the point of fearing or disliking the place. Before I’m across the street, he’s back to his regular self, running and horsing around with his friends. But for the 45 seconds I unzip his jacket and hook it with his Yankee hat in his cubby, he’s totally blank. He doesn’t argue or fight or try to get me to stay. Passive resistance in it’s purest form.
He’s never once said goodbye to me. This morning, one of his teachers lifted him up to the small square window in the door to give him one last chance to wave or grin. He stared through me like I was a lamp post. The corners of his mouth never even flinched.
Later today I’ll hear how he had a great day and I’ll forget feeling like I broke his heart this morning and I’ll forgive myself. Again.