Wednesday, June 29, 2005

Growing Up Well (?!)

I picked up my son this past Monday night from the grade 8 graduation dance at his school. It was after 11:00PM and the kids were congregating outside and saying goodbye to each other. The tradition is that grade 7 students and parent volunteers help with serving dinner and cleanup. While there, they get to observe what goes on and will know what to expect the following year, when it is their turn to graduate from elementary school. My son was among the grade 7 volunteers.

I watched the kids as they milled around, talking and joking with each other. Most of the kids in my son's group have been together since grade one and interact comfortably with each other. As I watched them, I couldn't help think back to when I was my son's present age.

When I was twelve years old, soon to turn thirteen, it was 1957, in Port Colborne, Ontario. How things have changed since then.

I am on record, here in this blog and elsewhere, bemoaning the fact that many things have changed for the worse in recent decades. Many things, yes, but not everything. While I don't like the loss of innocence of our children, far too early in life because of changing outlooks and values, I do appreciate the fact that boys and girls interact much more easily and less self-consciously than when I was a boy in the 1950s. I watched as my son hugged several of his female friends and knew that I would never have seen, much less experienced that, in 1957, at least where I grew up. Now, there was nothing overtly salacious in the contact between male and female, my son and his friends were simply acknowledging that they had shared something together, a rite of passage of sorts, even if they were not themselves graduating this year. I could have done with a slightly more relaxed atmosphere when I grew up.

One more year to go and then my son is off to high school. Can't time slow down just a little bit?


  1. I enjoyed the softer side of this post.

    And, I totally gotcha as far as where the heck time goes. Time never moved so fast in all my life as since Oee was born. Three years? Y E A R S ???

    "What kind of trick is this?" I question, laugh and cry.

  2. Wait til you get to my age. Enjoy every day; they whiz by so quickly that suddenly you realize that you haven't done many of the things that you had planned on. Above all, enjoy your child. But I don't have to tell you that. Your joy at the daily interaction with Oee is evident.