Last night I was fortunate to experience one of those moments in parenthood that, if you could, you would wrap up tightly and place on a shelf so you could keep it safe and close to your heart.
My friend called me, and much to my surprise, asked if she could talk to my son. I heard only my son’s short replies to her questions.
Wanna talk to my mom now?”
What the heck?
So when I got on the phone, my friend began to gush about the endearing qualities of my third grade son. This isn’t unlike her, as she does have a special place in her heart for my son who has been a friend to her kids since they were two. She calls him her kindred spirit. She loves the rock star greeting she gets whenever he sees her. She loves his enthusiasm and friendliness and his comfort level with her.
But last night was different.
It seems that he is also quite a knight in shining armor. At school yesterday he stepped in where he saw a wrong being committed and made it clear that it was not going to be tolerated.
Apparently some girls were not being all that nice to my friend’s daughter. Saying mean things and calling her names. So, according to her daughter, my son came over and picked her up off the ground and announced to those around them “No one messes with my girl.”
I am still drying my eyes. Third grade people, third grade! I am so proud of him.
This boy, who for the most part is still such a boy, did not miss a beat and jumped to the rescue of this damsel in distress. Now I am sure she added some extra drama to her mother, I mean at 9, we all began looking for our princes. But even so, in my friend’s retelling it to me, this moment in time solidifies that we — my husband and I — are doing something right.
I’ve always known there lies a little man, a knight, a Prince Charming, a hero locked away behind those beautiful, blue and mischievous eight-year-old eyes. A boy who knows right from wrong. A boy with compassion for others and the ability to help in the time of need. For this, I am so proud. My heart is 10 times bigger than it was yesterday afternoon,
So, the next time when I am wondering whether he is actually an alien from the planet Goofball, I will reach up on that shelf and take that box down. I will take a deep breath and unwrap the wonderful gift that he unknowingly gave to me last night.