I remember The N1S' first day as a second grader at Wilson, though. I packed an extra snack bag of M & Ms (or some similar confection) and attached a note: "Share this with the kid sitting next to you." He did. That's how he made his first friend at a new school.
Middle school years
I totally and unequivocably dweebed out with The N1S his first year of middle school -- middle school being the seemingly scariest place on earth that you could send an innocent 12-year-old.
Is it too late to apologize? Probably.
We rode the city bus together to make sure The N1S knew the route. We walked the halls of Sacajawea Middle School, found all his classrooms and made sure his locker combination worked. (The Bermtopia school district later established middle school bus service so kids didn't have to take the city bus. Probably at the frantic behest of painfully embarrassed 12-year-old boys all over the city.)
The N2S dodged the Mom Bullet. He and a posse of his friends visited Sac a couple of days before school started and figured out all that stuff on their own. I'm pretty sure I drove them there, though. And gave them snacks afterward.
High school years
I behaved myself for the most part. Although I did sneak a bag of The N2S' favorite treats -- along with an adorable stuffed tiger (the high school mascot) into his locker as a first-day surprise freshman year. He found them about six months later -- the first time he used the locker. The tiger was still in pretty good shape. The snacks? Not so much.
Taking your kids to college their freshman year is the emotional equivalent of Omaha Beach. If the first bullet misses you, another will find you further up the beach.
We had successfully gotten The N1S settled at his college of choice. Our farewells were moderately tearful, but full of laughter too. We were all very proud of ourselves for being so brave.
I was picking up a few supplies at the local Safeway later that evening, when the opening notes of the James Ingram/Linda Ronstadt cover of "Somewhere Out There" from the film "American Tail" wafted across the store.
Um. Can you say, Clean up on Aisle 4?
P.S. Apologies to my two fine, upstanding young men who I love more than life itself for posting these pictures. But. Too bad for you.