I can see the yellow blur of the school bus passing in front of my window. Soon my little boy will excitedly burst through the front door with his picture of a giraffe from art class. His big brown eyes will meet mine as I get a toothless “I missed you, Mom” grin. He will tell me everything he had on his tray for lunch, recount the whole soccer game at recess, and share all about that hilarious thing his friend said on the bus.
He will then sit on my lap as he takes each school paper out of his take-home folder and will proudly point to the stickers on top. His best one will be displayed on the refrigerator door.
The door bursts open and that same little boy isn’t little anymore.
At 13, his big brown eyes barely meet mine as I ask the redundant “how was school?” question hoping (maybe, just maybe) to get a longer answer this time.
His lanky almost 5-foot-5 frame trudges down the hallway to his room and closes the door to FaceTime his friends. He will tell them about his day, that girl he thought smiled at him at her locker, and about that hilarious thing his buddy said on the bus.
All the things he used to tell me about first.
My heart is longing and searching for that little boy I lost around the time I was convinced he was only catching a cold when the reality was that his voice was changing. About the same time when he stopped waving at me from second base when he hit a double.
It’s different now.
I guess you don’t raise your babies to be little forever, but I thought I would have more time. I think we are both finding our new place in our mother-son bond that I know is still there. (It has to be there somewhere.)
I have never been a mother of a teenager before and he is getting used to being a teen, so this is a learning experience for the both of us. But my heart is breaking.
I miss him even when he is home.
I can only hope his bedroom door will soon be open enough to let me in. To share the stories of his day with me again. To see those big brown eyes looking back at me. I hear from some seasoned moms of teens that they will eventually come back to you.
Until then I will be there. Waiting for him to let me back in.