This is the first time that I can remember that I have had to make Luke do something major that he hasn't wanted to do. The first time that he has been grown up enough that I feel like his concerns and worries are 100 percent justified. And I have to say, it is hard. My heart hurt for him every time he told me that he wanted to go to his old school with his friends. Every time that he told me he didn't have anyone to talk to. It was hard to watch him line up at the beginning of the day and awkwardly try to make conversation with the boys in his class. Because the thing is, there isn't much I can do. It is up to Luke to make his way at this new school, up to him to find his place and make new friends. And I can only watch from a distance.
A few nights ago I had a dream where Craig and I decided to take a road trip while Luke was in school. He was our only child. We had to be home by 9 pm to pick him up, but we were still in Georgia at 8 pm and realized that we wouldn't make it. I tried to call a friend to pick him up, but my cell phone died. I didn't have any phone numbers that I needed because they were all in my cell phone. Craig was frantically googling phone numbers and I was trying to remember the numbers of my friends, all while desperately punching them into some antiquated phone that looked like a singing greeting card. It was crumbling in my hands with each wrong number that I tried.
It is this helpless vulnerability that is the hardest part of parenting, I think. The knowledge that you can't always make it all better, that you often can't dial a number and fix the problem. That you can't alway be there to pick your child up.