Fifth grade means the start of middle school in our town. That’s a lot of new experiences for a 10-year old to tackle. Six teachers instead of one. Assignments read and submitted on a glitchy iPad instead of paper. Lockers. The popular crowd. Instagram. A loud cafeteria filled with kids of all ages, including some who shave. And did I mention that girls are no longer as yucky as they once were? When he walks through the door, his eyes are hooded, still processing the lessons of the day. Being a big brother is often low on his list.
But the other night, he accepted Sophie’s invitation to have a sleepover party. Cuddled in my bed, patiently reading Corduroy once, twice, and then three times, I got a glimpse of my little boy, still in there, not completely lost to the storm of middle school.
Their shared joy over this quiet moment is one of those times I want to freeze and remember, long after he learns how to navigate the cafeteria, long after he starts to shave, long after he leaves our nest.