I told Declan about the squirrels eating the mushrooms yesterday and his first reaction was to wonder if the squirrels were okay, since some mushrooms are poisonous. That had been my first question too. (The answer: they’re probably fine, but there’s nothing we can do about it if they’re not, and I guess we’ll find out.)
He starts fourth grade in about a month. I keep rolling that around in my head–fourth grade. That feels big, I think because my memories of fourth grade feel more like a person and less like a little kid. In fourth grade, we had a poker game going during indoor recess. (What did we use for betting? I can almost see it but not quite–something from the classroom, not real money.) In fourth grade, I finally mustered up the courage to learn to ride my bike, mostly because I had a big crush on Mike K and he was really into bikes (like, BMX trick biking or whatever) and I was embarrassed that I couldn’t ride. (Fourth grade is also where I overheard my mom talking about how Mike had been offered a place in some prestigious children’s choir boarding school or something, and I also pulled together a lot of courage to write him a little note saying that I hoped he stayed because I would miss him if he left. He never responded to the note, but he also didn’t go to children’s choir boarding school. He’s a professional drummer and drum teacher now, irrelevant to this story but still interesting I think.) I remember doing a science lab about magnets, and memorizing a Robert Frost poem. I think my point here is that there’s some qualitative difference to my memories of fourth grade, relative to earlier grades–I also really clearly remember some extravagantly complicated playground games in second grade, for instance, but that memory feels like little-kid stuff in a way that the fourth-grade poker games don’t.
It’s all layers, then, looking at my own tiny human and coming to terms with the fact that he’s not actually tiny. Right now, he and I are so much in each other’s pockets, but that’s going to change, and fast.