As I rounded the corner, I saw her walking to the end of their driveway, kiss her son on the head and then watch as he walked by himself down the sidewalk to the school. I let him get started and then followed walking my dog. When I turned around to begin to walk home I saw her still at the end of the driveway watching until, with a wave from a block away, her son turned onto the walkway which led up to the front door of the school and disappeared from her sight.
I wonder what she was feeling as she watched her son walk away by himself. Pride that he was growing up and old enough and confident enough to walk to school by himself. Sad because it was one more reminder of her son no longer needed her like he once did. Worry because she was not there to hold his hand. Or, some loving combination of all of the above.
Here is the truth.
Like it is for me with my own sons, for the rest of her life, in her heart and her mind’s eye, she will still kiss him on the head and stand at the end of the driveway and watch as he walks down the sidewalk and into the world.