This week is Mallie Bee's senior recital. After four years of college dancing to other people's choreography, this time it will be her turn. I am a mess of emotions. I can't believe that the last of our kids is nearly done with college. I can't believe that fifteen years of watching her dance is coming to a close, and while I would never want my wants to collide with her needs, it is clear that her choices will not be likely keep her close by.
An introvert by nature, her heart explodes in dance and we have been lucky enough to witness it from the beginning. There is so much excitement with all of us for this night and I spent part of my Sunday doing a Facebook invite to every person I know who I think might be remotely interested in my kid's recital. They have responded in spades. Who are we that so many people will go out on a Wednesday night to share our joy?
I work at the college that Mal attends and our paths never cross. Today, however, I overheard a student in our office talking about the show she's going to be in on Wednesday. "You have to come," she said to another student. "We've all been working on it for a long time and it's going to be fantastic."
I wondered if it was the same show that Mal was going to be in but it is a big school and there are likely many things going on that night. But the guy she was talking to said her name and I recognized it and came out of my cube to introduce myself.
"Mallory's mom? You're Mallory's mom?"
"Do you have any idea what kind of human being you raised? I don't know anyone else like her. She's the kindest person I know. Really. She is kind to everybody."
Which was funny because just the night before Mal was talking about people who are nice when it's convenient and easy for them and makes them look good instead of as a trait that they aspire and work toward on a regular basis.
Every year after the recital we take a picture. Maggie (the documenter of our family) insists on it. I am grateful that she does and that we have these memories. I am also grateful that, as hard and expensive as it was for us to pay for it, that we have had the chance to educate our kids in order for them to pursue what they love.
But mostly I am grateful that when they go about pursuing those passions they remember that being kind is a daily sort of thing.