for those of you that know me, this will come as a shock, i’m sure, but i cried like a big ‘ol baby during first grade graduation. you would have thought he was graduating from high school or harvard the way i carried on. it’s not that i’m sad to see the eldest leave first grade behind, it’s a two-fold issue for me. first, east avenue primary has been such a wonderful, caring place for my sweet, smart, gifted, talented, amazing, challenging boy to be. this year, we sought his AS diagnosis after thinking long and hard about it. e.a. has been amazing helping joe without hindering him…letting joe help himself. his teachers have cared for him when i couldn’t be there. they have supported him through meltdowns, achievements, not being able to eat in the cafeteria, helping him work with his friends and the list goes on. he has been at peace there. now we are on to another school at GISD and i am hopeful it will be as rewarding an experience, but how can i leave e.a. and all the wonderful women (and coach) without shedding a tear or two. they all knew his name (even with 600 plus other kids there). they all took the time to really see him. i feel the love those special and amazing people have for children everytime i walk in the door. mrs. blundell, his first grade teacher was the perfect teacher for him. i have to admit, i was worried when i first met her. she seemed so, well, nice. she is nice. she is firm. she is fair. she is loving. she didn’t let joe get to her, she just loved him and helped him thrive. the second issue for me is time. my wise grandmother has always said, “the days are long, but the years are short.” so true. where oh where are the years going? it seems as if we just brought home this tiny little thing wrapped in his swaddling blanket, with his wide smile, smart eyes (i know, we all think our children are geniuses, but you could just tell by looking at this tiny babe and tell he was working things out in his brain already) and undeniable sweet spirit. now, here we are 7 1/2 years later. with a crazy smart kid, who by friday was already asking when he could start learning this summer, who loves his brother and family. how did we get so lucky? i know the next 7 1/2 years will fly by even faster, but in so many ways i’m not ready. it’s not that i fear my children can’t handle it. it’s that i’m not ready. i love our long cuddles, our summer nights of playing and watching documentaries, our vacations, our simple yet not so simple life. again, how did we get so lucky?