I remember watching him walk down the walk to kindergarten.
As cliche as it is it seems like yesterday.
I kept my face together in case he turned around and when the door closed behind him I drove up and around the corner, pulled the car over and cried like I hadn’t cried in years.
What was this feeling?
Why was it so strong?
What do I do with myself now that my little buddy was off in the big bad world and I was alone?
Truthfully I wasn’t alone.
Chloe was six months old and she was strapped in the car seat crying too.
She probably just wanted a bottle but I pretended that she missed her brother like I did.
How did this happen?
How did I end up sitting on the side of the road in a old beat up Dodge Neon crying in symphony with my baby?
How did I end up being a single parent?
And how did I end up loving someone so much that being away from them for just a few hours made me feel like my soul had been torn out?
You are probably wondering that too.
Well let me tell you.
To accomplish the greatest achievement of my life, being a father, required me to make a series of terrible decisions.
We will cover that at a later time.
Back to the walking away…
So this morning I drop Dravin off at school and he walks up the path to the high-school and I feel overwhelmed with emotion.
All I see is my little Toy Story buddy walking up to kindergarten.
I keep my face strong yet again.
Not that I think he will turn back, but what if his classmates or their parents see me sitting in the car crying.
When you are a single dad in a conservative state you learn quickly not to draw attention to yourself.
So I drive up and around the corner and head home.
I do not burst into tears.
I talk to god.
I don’t know what I believe about god, but I talk to god a lot.
Pretty much all the time.
I tell god that I know that I have done my job and I know I should be happy that he has made it this far.
I tell god how grateful I am that he is still alive, because he doesn’t have to be you know.
People die everyday and somehow through some miracle, my little boy…my not so little boy…who ate a pot brownie at a party recently and told me about it…who still comes out of his room and hugs me once a day…who likes girls now…who has gotten so angry with me I am pretty sure he wanted to punch me…my little boy who has watched me make every mistake a first time parent could ever make and still loves me…somehow he is still alive.
So I tell god how grateful I am that he has made it this far and I thank god for that, because even though I am not sure that there even is a god, I AM sure that Dravin being alive is some sort of blessing that I cannot take full credit for.
I am still talking to god when I pull in the driveway and as I yell at the dogs to stop barking.
I put god on hold to look at Facebook and when I do I see my friend’s 19 year old son, who has been battling cancer with courage that is unimaginable to me, has passed away this morning.
And then I cry…
Like the first day of kindergarten all over again.