Monday, May 11, 2009

All Growed Up

There are two truisms:

1. Kids like to do thing when you aren't looking. My children only poked each other when I left the room. And they were fast. Too fast. They made faces at each other when my back was turned and had innocent smiles when I looked back at them. My son disappeared into a busy mall - while I briefly attended to his sister. It's a blink, a hummingbird wing flap. Children move more quickly than the experts say. But their most stupendous achievement - was they they managed to grow up - when I wasn't looking.
2. It may be said - being Italian - we eat our way through life. Feeling low? Chocolate! Need comfort? Pasta! Birthday/anniversary/holiday/vacation/promotion/any event: Mangia! And so I did. All day - I ate my way through Mother's Day and through my son's graduation. And when I was poring over the dessert tray and not keeping an eye on my son - he grew up.
I wasn't feeling teary - just excited. I didn't feel overly sentimental as is my want. Or I didn't think I was - until I came home and noticed most of my photos were blurry. Shaky hands? Could my emotions have slipped into my hands - when I wasn't looking?
St. John's University starts graduation day off with a church service. Then a brunch. So we ate our first meal of the day. And posed for photos. Oy! Did we pose for photos! So what if I was a chubbo - I was going to be in those photos!
We then got Matthew dressed (incorrectly - who remembers how the shawls goes on the gown?) And posed for incorrect-shawl, blurry photos. And then we went to the ceremony. And sat. Not exactly running off the calories consumed at brunch. It seemed that we sat and we sat and then I blinked and I had a graduate.
After the graduation, there were cookies and punch on the lawn. I thought it was extremely civilized. And did partake. I blinked my way through photos, cookies, punch, diplomas, kisses, hugs, a blur of caps. A sea of shawls. A gaggle of gowns.

So my first photo of the new-grad was with cookies and not a diploma. First things first. And we continued to pose for photos. And they continued to be blurry. But me? I was feeling fine - no lumps in the throat. I was happy munching on cookies. I was watching everything. I wasn't going to turn around and miss one moment.

I even managed some non-blurry photos. (Above - not below!)

Matthew's entourage: Aunt, Grandma, Dad, sister. And I only took 75 other ones. Still feeling good. Cookies consumed. Photos done. What's next? Dinner!

And we found this darling diner in St. Cloud.

We were feeling loopy by this time. So I took a photo of a mirror showing the reflection of me taking a photo of me..... while Kirsten made faces.

Matthew - knowing there was no food left in his apartment as the roommates were determined to consume it all before graduation - checks out the menu.

Kirsten gets a milkshake. Matthew got a malt and the photo seems to have flown away .... with my emotions.


Chicken fingers... good old fashioned diner fare....
And we kissed Matthew good-bye, left for home and I felt good knowing I would have my son home for one month before grad school kicks in. Matthew's parting words to me were, "I'll have the photos on Facebook ready for you by the time you reach home. Arrived home and I log onto Facebook.
The caption to the photo album reads: "All Growed up."

And there he was - "All Growed Up." And the lump appeared in my throat. The tear ducts opened. A thought flashes through my mind. "I turn my back for one minute and look what he did! He grew up!"


Heather S-G said...

Don't tell me that! But really, congrats...that's so awesome :)

Heather said...

your son is so lucky to have such a proud and loving mom :) it sounds like you guys had a great day - and congrats to him!

Anonymous said...

Congratulations to your son! We are just going to be celebrating my daughter's graduation from preschool - the first graduation of many to come :) They do grow quickly.

Sara said...

Sounds like a great day. Congrats again to your son!

Claudia said...

Preschool graduation - like it was yesterday. Precious and sweet. And even at the college level - it's precious and sweet.

Bunny said...

You have given me a lump in my throat!! I know oh to well how they grow up. I'm watching my granddaughters grow now.

Reeni said...

How bittersweet. Congratulations to your son! Thanks for sharing. It was a lovely post.

Pearl said...

congratulations to Matthew - he's such a handsome man :)

Wanda..... said...

Your heart warming post left me with blurry vision early this morning...tears will do that...your mixture of sadness and humor describes such points in our lives well...and you get to experience it all again with grandchildren someday possibly...
Smile and take care Claudia...

Wanda..... said...

I forgot to mention...I would consider borders...especially if they were Italian cooks...that fixed all the meals! :)

Katherine Roberts Aucoin said...

I can imagine how proud you are of your son> What a handsome son too. I enjoyed your family photos and of couse the food photos too! Lokks like you had a wonderful day!

OhioMom said...

....and here I sit with tears flowing down my face. What wonderful memories children leave us with when they are 'all grown up' :)

Vikis Kitchen said...

First time here. Enjoyed my visit. This post is very touching for me. Some how reminds me of my mother and her feelings towards us.
Belated Mother's day wishes.
Moreover I am hosting an event called 'The potluck - chicken' . It is my first time to host one. Expecting your suggestions , support and yummy dishes . Hearty welcome dear.

Donna-FFW said...

Oh, congratulations, you must be super proud!!

Gloria Chadwick said...

Congratulations to your son. They do grow up way too fast. I like your stream-of-consciousness post; it's very real. :)

Anonymous said...

Writing from the heart! I love it! Congrats to your son :)

Lynn said...

Oh gosh, now you've got me blinking back tears. I'll have a college graduate of my own in a couple more weeks, and I am planning on bringing lots of Kleenex. Mine will not be coming home with us for a month. So while we get on a plane for home the day after graduation, we will be leaving part of us behind, a couple states away, to start his own life, "all growed up." You and your son put it beautifully! :) Thanks.