It is no small thing, when attending an information night for the college of your senior child's choosing, to realize how special it is to never worry that he won't get in, never worry that he won't be academically ready for college-level classes, never worry that he won't be college material. It is no small thing to see the entrance requirements, knowing this school would be the hardest to get into, and know he exceeds them all.
It is no small thing, looking at all the numbers and figures on the screen, taking into account the years of earning a substitute teacher's pay to get your child qualified for eighty percent of tuition forgiveness, taking into account the sacrifices made along the way to get him academically eligible for a competitive school, to still be staring at dollar figures larger than you would like to see.
It is no small thing to talk, again, about the importance of a job, or scholarships, or grant money, and even talking about the back-up plan of student loans, to see your child's face as he realizes, perhaps for the first time exactly the figures you've been talking about all this time.
It is no small thing, for a man, new to his role in this family, only months into being a parent in any capacity, to say with a catch in his throat, "Whatever it takes, Jacob, we will make this happen. Whatever it takes, the money will be there."
It is no small thing at all for a grown man to realize how jealous he is of the opportunities available to this teenager that were never an option for him, and instead of feeling spiteful or bitter, offering to do everything possible to make sure that this teenage boy can seize any opportunity that comes his way. Including attending the competitive university that he dreams of attending.
Being the mother of a child facing a world of opportunities and being the wife of a man who generously supports that boy is no small thing to be taken for granted.
Oh how I love the men in my life.