Tuesday morning my son departed to Washington, DC on a school trip with his fifth grade classmates. What an interesting day Tuesday was for me. Excited for him to have this amazing experience, but sad for me because my boy was leaving without me. The day before, while he was in school, I packed his bag organizing his outfits by day in big space bags. I wrote notes and placed them in every bag to surprise him every day. That night as I’m tucked him in bed he started crying and he said, “Mami, I’m going to miss you and Papi and Camila”. The crying went on for awhile so I told him that he really didn’t have to go, but he said he wanted to. I kissed him and hugged him and he finally fell asleep.
4:00 am came and the alarm went off, I woke up and realized that, that morning my boy was leaving. I got bombarded with thoughts, “Will he be ok? Is he going to get home sick? I don’t want him to suffer. I don’t want him to be miserable all the way across the country. Oh my gosh!!! I’m going to miss my boy” I was freaking out but I managed to get him up pretending I was excited and trying to keep it together. See, my boy had never been away from home without close family, so this trip is a big deal. We made it to the airport by 6:00 AM. My husband pulled up by the curve side as we were told to do, and we got out of the car. Gabriel hugged his dad goodbye and he started to cry. Immediately I took my phone and told them to pose for a picture, that took some of the intensity of the moment off. I walked in the terminal with him and right away the teacher leader of his group gave him his ticket and told him to get in line. Some kids were crying, some were laughing with friends and some were just going with the motion -Gabriel. He checked in at the counter with his luggage like a big boy and was immediately directed to the security check point line all while I looked from the distance. He wouldn’t make eye contact with me and I realized it was his way of coping with the moment. He made it through the check point, grabbed his jacket and backpack and was about to walk away until I screamed “Gabriel” he looked back, I waived, he waived back and off he went. I didn’t get to hug him nor kiss him goodbye.
My husband and I got back to the house and he went to work and then it hit me “OH SSSSSHHHHNAP I DIDN’T KISS MY BOY. I DIDN’T HUG HIM” and I started crying like a little girl. I know that was the best thing to do, not to hug him or kiss him because he and I know that would have been it. He would have lost it and so would have I, but man… I know this is a trip he will remember for the rest of his life. I know he is going to learn and have a blast. I know this is a growing experience for him and for me. I know allowing him to grow and experience things on his own is necessary and that we as parents won’t be able to hold on to them forever. I also know that letting go of wanting to hold on is the toughest thing I’ve ever had to do.
I miss my boy and I know he misses me but thank God for technology. The teachers have been posting pictures on twitter for the mental health of parents like me and once in awhile I can see him smiling and that makes this whole crazy thing a tiny bit easier. It’s only day 3 and I’m counting down the days to his return.
So I leave you now because I need to go back to twitter to see if I can see my boy one more time before he goes to bed.
til next time,