Tomorrow is a big, big day. Tomorrow is a big day for all of us, really.
Your first day of Kindergarten!!
From this moment on, life will change once again for our family. This is one of those times when Mommy has to put aside her own anxieties and fears and remember that this is really YOUR moment.
Yes, I'm going to worry incessantly about you while you're gone. Yes, it is bittersweet that you are the same age that Gavin was when he died - and that he's not here to get excited for you.
But... this is about you. So there are a few things we want you to know.
We are so proud of you. Enormously proud.
Today we had a "First Day of School" photo shoot. Basically, we faked it. It was fun and relaxing... which is why we did it the day before! We want your first day to be fun and relaxing... and not stressful as we rush to try to get "just the right shot" to remember the moment.
In ten years when you look at these pictures, will you really remember that they were taken the day before? Oh... I guess you will since I'm writing it down. Anyway... tomorrow morning we will have one less thing to think about and, for that, I am glad.
Brian, there is a difference between school and life. In school, you are taught a lesson and then given a test.
In life, you are given a test that teaches you a lesson.
Growing up with Gavin and developing a compassionate and helpful character... and then experiencing his tragic death and all the grief that came with that... they are some heavy tests for someone to have before their fifth birthday. But because of that journey, you learned invaluable lessons that will never leave you.
Sure - you will learn so much from teachers and books and the school experience. But Brian, your Dad and I want you to know that it is your character that will bring you the most important personal success in your life.
You are such a special little boy. I'm sorry - BIG boy. You're wise beyond your years... charming and persuasive... compassionate and friendly... protective and thoughtful... smart and curious... adventurous and obedient. It has been so easy to raise you... and a privilege to love you.
I'll never forget the day you were placed into my arms. Before that day, I had rarely (if ever!) left your big brother's side. I was so nervous to leave him and stay in the hospital. But I remember consciously making the decision to focus solely on you and trust that Gavin was in capable and loving hands (and he was with Daddy and Granny and Aunt Bean and our very first aide). You and I spent four incredible days together in our hospital room - staring at each other, snuggling all day and getting to know each other. They were four of the best days of my life - we forged a bond that is unbreakable. You were a peaceful and calm baby - and so, so beautiful.
And so it is now that I find myself consciously making a decision again. You and I have been attached at the hip - especially since Gavin died. You were with me through almost all of my ultrasounds and appointments when I was carrying your sister. And now that she's here, we are like "the three musketeers." We do everything together!
But now - it is your turn to fly. And it's my time to trust that you will be in capable and loving hands.
Tomorrow is your first day of Kindergarten.
You will learn new things... make new friends... have new experiences... and develop new skills.
You will have fun... and embrace a sense of discipline that will carry you through your many years in school - and beyond.
And we will be excited to welcome our silly, happy boy home every day to hear about all of your adventures.
Just remember one little thing if you feel nervous... or scared... or worried. Remember all of those times that you stood by Gavin's side.
And know that by your side is where he'll be forever. You're never alone.
We love you so much, Brian.
Enjoy your Kindergarten year!!