My son received his California Drivers License today. April 5th, 2012 will forever be known as the day I stopped sleeping. We went out for breakfast to celebrate, came home, and 10 minutes later be borrowed the car. He left 5 minutes ago to go to the mall, all by himself, and I cannot stop crying. I have loved this boy from the time I was a little girl. I used to dream about him when I was a child, and being his mother has been my wish for as long as I can remember. Today I have been his mom for 5918 days, yet it feels like he was just born yesterday. I have loved every single minute of being this remarkable human beings mother.
I did not cry until after he left, and I am proud of myself for that. I like to think he has no idea exactly how crazy I am, even though I know he is very clear of the level of my insanity. Before he left I made him go to the bathroom so he would not be distracted. He laughed, obliged, and gave me the look. A look that let me know he is painfully clear of how crazy his mother is, yet also let me know he loved me and knew this was hard for his mom. He assured me he would be careful, gave me a hug, told me not to worry, and he left just as my chin began to quiver.
He is a good driver. I believe he is ready and will be just fine. It’s all the other people on the road that freak me out. I have seen driving, even here in our sweet little neighborhood, that makes me want to get out of my car and punch people in the face. California is the land of really bad drivers. I worry every time he left the house before he got his license, but now it will be just a little bit scarier. For every prayer he had waiting for this day to come quickly, I had the same prayer hoping it would come slowly. It is a defining moment for him as a young adult, and also for me as his mother.
When our children are babies, we wait for them to walk, then pray they will sit down. We pray for them to talk, then wish they would be quiet. We pray they will drive so the schlepping can stop, then wish they failed their test and we could schlep them for just a little longer. I am working, he is on spring break, and I would have dropped everything to drive him to the mall today. My schlepping has been replaced with waiting. Waiting for the call he has arrived safely, and for the sound of the car pulling into the driveway.
I remember his first kick in my stomach, the first time I heard his heartbeat, and the first time I saw his perfect little face. I remember the first time he told me loved me. I remember when he packed all his favorite things and ran away because I would not make him macaroni and cheese for lunch. I remember the first time he went to the movies without me and called me to tell me not to worry. I remember his first love and his first heartache. Now I will remember the first time he took the car out on his own. Each first is a blessing. I am in love with him, proud of him, and keeping the faith.
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