Our local school is fairly small. So small that there is no busing services for the students. In order to go to classes every day, kids either need to walk to school or have their parents drop them off. Because of this, there is a drop off lane in front of the entrance to the school. That way, parents can just pull up, open their doors, and just let their kids get out without having to leave the car.
I don’t do that, however.
Every morning I park a couple of blocks away and walk Baby E to the door. The walk only takes us a minute or two to complete. Then I pick her up, hug her, put her back down, and watch her run inside. After that, it’s back to my car to go home and get ready for work.
As I was on my way back to my car yesterday morning, I heard someone yell, “Uncle Revis!” I turned around to see my niece running up to me. She jumped up into my arms (which was not good for my back, but I wasn’t about to complain) and hugged me. Right after I put her down, I was forgotten by her as she raced inside to be with her cousin until school started (she’s in second grade while Baby E is in kindergarten).
I passed my sister in law on my way to my car as she sat in the drop off line. We said our hellos and then she asked me why I didn’t just drop Baby E off like that. I could’ve told her it’s because her sister wants me to do it that way (which is true). Mrs. Revis still hasn’t come to terms with our daughter being in kindergarten and is a little freaked out about the thought of just dropping her off. There’s always at least one teacher out there (though usually two or three), and you can watch from your car until they make it into the building, but she still worries.
I just shrugged the question off.
I could’ve easily given the “my wife wants me to do it this way” excuse, but that’s not why I do it that way. The truth is that I want to do it that way. I want to do that little bit of walking with her. I want to spend that few minutes of extra time with her.
Every morning, when I park, as soon as she shuts the car door, her hand immediately comes up and grabs mine. She only needs to hold my hand when we’re crossing the street, but she doesn’t let go until we reach the school doors and I love every second of it. I know I need to cherish these moments now because it won’t be long until holding Daddy’s hand won’t be cool anymore.
So, for now, I’m going to keep parking my car and enjoy having my little girl’s hand in mine until we get to the door.