As the A to Z Challenge is winding down and wrapping up, I’ll leave you with this snappy jazz tune. My youngest son played it with his high school jazz band his senior year.
I’ve been missing my son, Andrew, A LOT! I last saw him 2 months ago when he was home for a week for spring break and it feels like a lifetime. My short visit with Kris is ending soon and he will begin his summer semester next week. As I’m looking at everyone’s tentative plans for the summer, I’m realizing that I don’t know when I’ll have all of my kids together again. It’s possible it will happen in July, but even that’s not certain. It makes me sad.
My kids are evenly spaced- 2-1/2 years between Michael and Kris and 2-1/2 years between Kris and Andrew. Kris and Andrew were best friends very early on. They are alike in many ways. Michael always seemed to be separate, partially because of the 5 years between him and Andrew, and it wasn’t until he was a senior and Kris was a freshman that I saw a sign that the gap might be bridged. It wasn’t easy for Michael when Kris arrived on the high school scene. He had not shared a school with Kris in 6 years and he liked it that way. Even worse was that he was not only sharing his school, Kris was in band with him- another first for Michael.
Michael was a cool kid- not in a mean, superior way but in a very friendly, unique individual way. (I was told this by the parents of his friends) Kris came on the scene as his unique in those most unique-est way sister (who would soon be his brother who would always be his sibling).
Early in Kris’s freshman year, some boys were giving her* a hard time and we heard about it at home. Michael did not respond or even appear to be part of the conversation. The next day he came home and told me that those boys would not be bothering Kris again. Apparently he had slammed both of them into a locker and told them if they ever even looked at Kris again they would have to answer to him. Now, Michael is gentle, not confrontational or aggressive in any way. And what I saw that day was just a sign of things to come.
When Kris came out as transgender, both Michael and Andrew fully supported him- no questions asked. Both his and Andrew’s unwavering loyalty to Kris makes me so proud of the men they have become. Michael stepped up his game as the oldest child in ways I couldn’t have imagined. He makes time for at least one brothers outing each time they come home.He checks in with both college kids regularly. They are close now and it fills my heart with joy to see the three of them interact with each other. Unfortunately that might not happen for a few more months! It’s a timely reminder for me to cherish the times that I do have them all home together!