Military mama: Making most of milestones

Many of you may be experiencing your first days of empty nest syndrome with the recent graduation ceremonies marking a major change. I’ve still got a house full of little birds, but each little chirp-chirp is hitting milestones so quickly, I know that it’s just around the corner of life.

This past weekend I went through two major mommy moments. Kaleb donned the cap and gown for the first of hopefully many graduations in his life. For many, a preschool completion ceremony is just another opportunity to play dress up. But this marks an amazing start to his educational journey. Yes, I’m a mom, through and through. But he has spent two years at Los Ninos working so hard on his speech and learning how to interact socially. Though, I admit wholeheartedly, it was adorable.

Those tiny scholars proudly marched up to receive a paper with their name on it, and mug for the cameras. You could almost see their hearts swell with confidence as they heard the claps meant only for them. It was beyond precious.

And I have to toot my own horn. I managed to make it through the day without crying.

Following the group graduation program, each individual classroom had their own programs. We were treated to several songs showcasing the skills they had acquired through the school year. Vowels, sign language, rhythm and a hilarious dance were the icing on the cake. My mommy heart was overjoyed.

The second milestone that Kaleb accomplished came two days later, and unfortunately this one had enough tears to drown a fish. We had our first family trip of the summer to the park. Followed shortly, by our first trip to the emergency room.

Swinging just short of the playground platform, our monkey boy clipped his chin on the way down, and boy did it split. And try as we might, that little stinker would not stay closed. A trip to the park ended with four stitches.

The initial incident was painful, the realization that shots were required was no doubt worse than the fall. But after he made it through the stitching process, Kaleb came to the realization that this could garner him a lot of attention. He proved that it provided enough fuel for conversation for many grandparent phone calls the next day. And his bravery earned him an ice cream sundae, a late bed time and plenty of sympathy that night.

I was so pleased to see that the incident didn’t make him completely gun shy of playgrounds. After leaving the hospital we headed over to a drive thru for a reward. We passed Green Acres park and Kaleb pointed out that we must have gone to the wrong park. We’d have to try that one later because the “blue one is just not working for me.” Through it all he’s keeping his chin up and hopefully clear of all solid objects.