I can't decide if I am happy right now or sad. Tomorrow McRae leaves for five (count 'em FIVE) glorious days of summer camp. The first time he has ever gone away for summer camp overnight, not just day camp.
Today we spent most of our time organizing and packing his things and it struck me, he is going away. As in, we won't be there. As in, I won't be shoving the recommended daily allowances of fruits, vegetables and salty foods down his throat. As in, I won't see him laugh, smile and torture his brother. As in, I won't run my fingers through his blonde mop and kiss him on the forehead at bedtime. As in, he won't be the first one up to let the dog out and feed him.
I guess that means I'll have to do that.
I have been asking him each day for the past few days if he is excited about camp. "Yeah mom!" Has been his answer, each and every time. I don't know what I am looking for, a hesitation, maybe? A little bit of I am gonna miss you mom, maybe? A little bit of apprehension, maybe?
Fact is, he is excited. He isn't worried and neither should I.
But that's my job, isn't it? To worry?
This weekend we went to a graduation party for Brett's cousin. This little girl (a'hem, 18-year-old girl) was born when we were dating in high school and we used to babysit her. Anna Banana, we called her as we snuggled her like she was our own, pretend baby (because we were 16 and 17 ourselves). Anyway, now she's all grown-up and a full-fledged adult.
God, I feel old.
Her party was a family affair, held at a community center complete with a band (and it didn't matter that I could not understand a word of the Spanish they were speaking - thanks a lot high school foreign language classes - they were incredible), authentic Mexican food, cowboys, high heels, love, laughter and everywhere you turned someone was smiling.
Once the music started, the dancing began and we sat at our table, tapping our feet and getting into the music. There sat McRae, next to me thumping his hands on his thighs along with the beat! Shocking, really, because all this time he has avoided dancing around the house and grooving in the car like he was given a dance repellent at birth. All this time, I thought Wyatt was my only child who had killer dance moves. All this time, I was wrong.
He grabbed my hand, he in his Hawaiian shirt and me in my new high heels, and out we went into the sea of cowboy boots and short skirts. And you know what? That boy can dance! We wiggled and jumped around like we had been doing these dances all our lives, my son and I and every now and then he'd jump on the floor and spin around then pop right back up like someone who had been through Breakdance Academy. Seriously. I don't know where this came from, but it was hilarious.
The onlookers cheered him on and clapped each time, egging him on. And he loved it. And even though he already owns a substantial amount of real estate in my heart, he managed to buy even more.
So why should I be worried about camp? If the kid can impress a bunch of strangers on the dance floor, I think he can handle 5 nights away at summer camp.
I know I'll miss him. I know tomorrow night when Wyatt turns off his light and yells "goodnight" to each of us by name (just like on The Walton's) and I don't hear McRae's name, I'll be a little heartbroken.
But then I'll smile a little and think of him tearing it up on the dance floor.
And I know he'll be okay.
Tell me he'll be okay.