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Based on the flooding in my heart, you would have thought the school was burning as my oldest walked towards it. It was a normal morning. There was nothing out of the ordinary to the untrained eye. To the mother’s eye; however, there was so much. This weekend, the first tooth was lost. And then another the next day. My son received the visits from her highness, the tooth fairy, and he was enamored by how she could sneak in without anyone seeing her. (Even after he positioned his head on his pillow in a way that you had to be magical to swap the tooth out without waking him.)

With his 2 bottom teeth out, it was just the start of my reflection for the day. How could he be losing teeth already? Even more, how could he already be getting his “grown up” teeth in? It all happens so fast. There are so many thoughts in the between the words of those questions.

And so there I was, watching him get smaller and smaller as he walked away from our house and towards the school building. As he walked, the tightness started in my throat. The questions started and the prayers began. I was begging for God to protect his heart again this day. An ordinary Monday, when my heart was soft to the truth.

I watched him turn the corner and I took a breath. My teeth clenched and I my sight got blurry from love. I turned to go back in the house and Scott was there. He was watching me watch our oldest walk away. His heart knew where mine had been. He opened the door to let me in.

His arms wrapped round me and quietly, he said, “He looks smaller when he walks away, but you have made him brave. He is a brave little boy.”

The tears stream one after the other. We hold tighter.

“He is brave.” Scott says again with strength and certainty in his voice.

The truth is there, whispering that he is becoming someone. He is not me. He is not my husband. He is becoming his own being. The strength and vulnerability in that realization is sometimes more than a mama’s heart can bear.

In my heart, as I walk away, I recognize the real truth about my oldest. It is his becoming that has taught me the most. In noticing life through his heart,  I have been raised.

I saw, only in my reflection, that he has made me brave.