Being away from my eleven year old son for a week when he heads off to his favorite summer boys' camp each June, takes a little getting used to. First, there are the daily hugs I go without. Secondly, there's one less lunch I prepare each day. I can't say that I miss reminding my son about the dirty socks he's forgotten to pick up off the floor, nor do I miss telling him, "That's enough time on the computer. That's enough time on the Wii". But yes, the absence of the hugs makes for the toughest adjustment each June.
But today was camper pick up day. We drove to the campground and parked our car. "Where do we go to find him?" my sister asked. Before I could answer, Paul was at my carside window, and as usual, being the clown he can be, he was making a silly weird face at me through the glass. "There's my boy!"
I'm well aware of the adjustments we'll make as Paul continues to grow older. But as he headed upstairs tonight to go to bed, he did not hesitate to come over to me to give me a hug goodnight. It's exactly that sweetness in him that will give me the patience to continue reminding him to pick up those stinky dirty socks.