It has become my habit when I pick him up just after lunchtime, to bring a little snack with me. After I pick him up from his class, he and I sit in the lobby of the children's building in one of the big chairs. We cuddle and we have our snack and we talk about his day. It really is one of my favorite parts of the day - just a quiet moment with me and my buddy after I've been away from him for a few hours.
Today, I had a really special treat for him: Chick-Fil-A french fries. "With no chicken, mommy?!" Usually he has to be forced to eat the chicken, then the fries, but today he just got to eat all the french fries, and he was so thrilled about that.
As he & I were sitting there with our french fries, most of the teachers were leaving for the day. Some of them are familiar to me, but many aren't. One whom I do not know walked by, and after she had passed us, she stopped and turned around.
"Your boy is special, you know," she said. "My class sometimes goes to the playground when his class is out there, and I want you to know that when he's not there, all of the kids are lost. Not just his class, but mine, too. They stand around and wonder what to play because Tucker isn't there to make a plan, and they all just miss him. Everyone wants to play with him and be his friend. He is very well liked."
A mom walking by overheard - her daughter was in Tucker's class last year, and she chimed in: "Melanie still asks about Tucker almost every day - everyone loves Tucker!"
Of course I thanked them for their kind words, and of course my mama heart just swelled with pride....but I'll tell you, it's interesting. He has this neat ability to make friends easily, and from the time he was a baby, people have just gravitated to him. From the time he started talking, taking him shopping with me has meant doubling the time it takes me to get it done - people just want to talk to him, and he is sure to talk right back.
I can't wait to see what the Lord does with this part of his personality. Tonight before bed, we read about Joshua and Jericho, and how Joshua was a Warrior Leader and it took my breath away when I read it because that is what my Tucker will be. A Warrior Leader. As we read, we learned that what made Joshua such a powerful leader wasn't that he was a fighter - it's that he listened to and obeyed God. I stopped reading and put my hands on my boy and prayed that over him right in the middle of the story.
It is the greatest, most terrifying privilege of my life to raise a man.
I was looking back through old pictures to find some to add to this post. I was looking for ones that illustrated how very very intense his personality has always been.
These are just a few I found in the very first album - they will give you just a glimpse into how, from day 1, this boy has felt things intensely.