He's a great driver. He's cautious, and that means we end up with a line of cars behind us, and so it's not really about him making a mistake so much as other people making one while in a hurry to get somewhere.
I see families with lots of little kids and think, "Oh my God. So many driver's ed miles they have to endure." That's where we are now.
We made it to the smaller city - one closer in size to the town Tom and I grew up nearby, and had Jack pull us into a parking lot near the courthouse, where not only did my baby park a car in the middle of a bustling town, but we all realized in unison that he'll be voting in the next election. Who knows where he'll be in four years. I was in Bloomington, Indiana. A freshman in college. Clinton beat Bush. I voted for Ross Perot. Jack could also be in Bloomington. I don't know. It's wild when the kid is old enough that you're thinking, 'Four years from now, he'll be voting.' Maybe he'll drive me. Maybe I'll still be Instagraming those milestones. Will that be weird?
It's a lovely time for us.
We've found an adorable place for lunch in this nearby town. Pick got a grilled cheese. Jack a monty cristo. Tom's always with the salads lately, and I have a favorite chicken salad sandwich, because of the cumin and avocado. We sat and we laughed, and it's what you dream about when you bring them home - that once they get old enough, they'll like being a part of your life, and things will be richer for it, and time will feel more precious, even just eating sandwiches.
Tom is off with Pick at the moment, salvaging for this year's epic Halloween idea. Jack is in the other room using his break time to get ahead in Geometry. He's learning postulates. I'm supposed to be reading James Lenman for a discussion tomorrow night, but a storm is rumbling in, making the backyard leaves pop in front of deep blue. Too distracting.
These moments make me the proudest, in the midst of all that's happening. I don't think ahead to the next big thing these days, but just sit and look around and make sure to remember. Not because I know it's all going to change again, but because of a promise I made to myself years ago that I would fully appreciate the accomplishments once we got here.
My kid is driving.
My MERLD kid.