My sweet Miles,
I can hardly believe you’re almost done with kindergarten. It doesn’t seem like a whole year ago that we walked up the hill to your future school for kindergarten round-up. You were a bit nervous then, which isn’t surprising—new things are tough for you. You get very attached to your routines, and shaking things up by changing schools is a pretty big shift. But you have done absolutely fantastically. I feel confident calling your kindergarten year a great success. You’ve made good friends (especially James, who shares your love of Mario games on the Wii), really blossomed in your reading, and discovered an enthusiasm for math. You told me you don’t like your Thursday early releases because you don’t get to do math boxes. Of course, the fact that you can earn an hour of Thursday afternoon Wii time by reading two challenge books has influenced your opinion on that topic.
Photo by Denny
Your dad and I were talking today about how sometimes it’s frustrating how inflexible and unwilling to try new things you are. He reminded me (and himself) that you’re not trying to be a jerk on purpose. We think it’s more of an anxiety thing with you. It stresses you out when things are unpredictable or vary from your expectations. We’re working on finding ways to accommodate your preferences while also helping you face your fears. I don’t want you to become reckless, sweetheart, but I don’t want you to be paralyzed with fear and miss out on all the exciting things in this world. I see a lot of myself in you. New things are tough for me too, and I get absorbed into routines. But when I look back on my life, the things that have terrified me the most have been the best things I’ve ever done. That includes having you, my little love.
Photo by Denny
We had our spring choir concert a couple of weeks ago, and Nana and Papa came to spend some time with us and hear our concert. We had a lot of fun playing with them, although I think you may have worn Papa out. It might also have been all the yard work your dad had him doing. We also had some fun time in the park with Uncle Mark. We met up with him downtown on the Ped Mall, and you climbed right onto the bench next to him and started chatting him up. You told him all about your current favorite author, Meghan McCarthy, and the topics of the books she’s written. You love her biographies, including the stories of Charles Atlas and daredevil pilot Betty Skelton. One cool thing is that Meghan McCarthy visited your school, and you got your own autographed copy of Daredevil. She even wrote your name in it and added a cool little illustration of a racecar (Ms. Skelton was also a racecar driver).
When you told Uncle Mark that Charles Atlas was “strong as an ox,” he told you that red oxen are the strongest. I’m 80% sure he was making that up, but you have repeated it to me since then.
We had a nice little family Mothers Day celebration last weekend. You made me a very sweet card at school, and you did a good job being sweet to me all day. Your dad never got a great smile out of you for our annual Mothers Day picture, as you were more interested in being silly, but I was still glad to have you in the frame with me.
Our plans for the summer aren’t too ambitious. You’ve got some summer classes to take at your old haunt, Willowwind. James is going to take a couple of them with you, too, so that will be fun. We’re definitely going to Lincoln at some time to see your yet-to-emerge little cousin. Mostly I hope we’ll have a summer full of Flavor Ice, trips to the library and the Natural History Museum, swimming, and general chilling out.
I’m so proud of all you’ve accomplished this year, Miles. You’re tall and smart and kind and responsible, and I know you’re going to rock first grade. But for the time being, I want to enjoy a summer with you still being my little kindergartner.
I love you so much.