Oh, my little one. He’s my little sunshine.
Yesterday was his last day of preschool and he had the best teachers in the world. Ms. I was out of town this week, but Ms. W was there, and we remembered to take a picture of Parker with her. She’s one of the rare ones, the kind of hourly teacher who falls in love with her kids and shows that in her care for them. Ms. W always told me what Parker did in class, what he ate, and which little girl’s heart he was breaking at the time. (There are two specific little girls who are both in love with him.)
When we gave her our hugs and loves, Ms. W cried. She cried! It broke my heart! We hate having to say good-bye to our lovely preschool teacher! Fortunately, we will see her around post because we know where she works for other functions… we will track her down!
Here is Parker with his beloved and absolutely beautiful Ms. W:
That was our morning. Our evening was much happier. We took the bigs to soccer practice and since I had napped yesterday afternoon (I’ve upped my exercise routine and I’ve been staying up too late… it caught up with me), I needed to get my exercise in during soccer. But, I have a 4 year old to watch, too!
The past three times we’ve gone to soccer and I’ve also needed to exercise, I’ve altered my expectations for my workout to include plenty of time to interact with Parker. Let me state here that in the grand scheme of things, I’m not “the fun mom.” I let my kids explore, I let them do seemingly dangerous things (climbing trees, skateboarding, etc) but I rarely DO things with them that they would consider fun. I’ve learned to be okay with the kind of mom I am! But let me tell you, these past few soccer practices have been fun for Parker!
One night we set goals to run from where we were to the farthest tree. Once there, we picked the farthest soccer goal and made an obstacle course out of it. Last night we “ran” one lap around the Lion’s Park here in Killeen before spending another hour at the playground. While on the trail, I’d run from one park bench to the next and do tricep dips and standing push-ups while Parker caught up. We spent a good 45 minutes going a mile! All throughout the process, Parker was playing an intricate imaginary game with me. He was Kai and I was his Samurai sister. We’d have to get our power back by doing push-ups or going super-stealth. He would chase birds, and then come back to the trail to be a ninja again. We looked at our long shadows and made shapes and did all sorts of “fun” things. Things that I did with the bigs, I’m sure, but haven’t done much with Parker, mostly because the bigs are always around and monopolizing his time!
At one point Parker climbed onto this lamp post and said, “Samurai Sister, take a picture of me!” And so I did.
If you look really closely (and use a lot of imagination) you can see the massive sword Parker is brandishing in this picture:
I want to send a huge thank you to the family in their car who stopped to let us cross at the official crosswalk… we couldn’t step on the asphalt and had to jump from one white stripe to the next or else risk falling into the pit of fire. I know we looked absolutely insane… I am, after all, am adult. I’m sure I was a sight. But thank you for obliging us the extra five seconds we took crossing the street.
It was all worth it when during one of our moments of walking Parker grabbed my had and said, “I’m Parker and I love you, mommy.”
He is loving. He tells me all the time that he loves me. He kisses and hugs me more than the bigs ever did. But there was something special about him coming out of character, grabbing my hand, and telling me that he loved me. Apparently I had filled his love tank pretty full.
We are going to be spending many more nights at the soccer fields and I have a feeling this will be a great way for me to spend one-on-one time with him, get some exercise (even if it’s light exercise). It will be fun to introduce daddy to this new game. We’re past the half-way mark of this deployment and when he gets back we’ll be in for some fun fall soccer! More hours at the ball fields means more special Parker/mommy (and eventually Parker/mommy & daddy) time.
My heart is full. Beyond full. I love being a Samurai.