Today is your first day of Third Grade!
Your older brother and sisters are so excited to tell everything you’ll need to know. They want to teach you everything—from how to earn a multiplication sundae to how to make your teacher like you to the secret of being popular.
The truth is you don’t really need their lessons, Nate. You’ve already figured most of this out on your own. You’re a happy kid and fun to be around. School comes easy for you and your teachers enjoy having you in class.
But some parts of Third Grade you’ll still have to figure out. You’re starting to become your own, independent person. That can feel hard.
This summer you went to Camp Lone Star for a whole week. You liked the freedom of camp—of staying up late and eating whatever sweets you wanted (without being nagged to brush your teeth). You liked making your own memories and telling your own stories about the Slip ‘N Slide.
Except the week at camp was also long for you. You missed Daddy and me. You were the youngest boy in your cabin and the other guys could get rough. You came home not sure you wanted that much independence again.
Nate, I think growing up always feels just like this. You’ll want to make your own memories, but you won’t always like the loneliness that comes with that. You’ll want to be a big kid at your school, but you won’t like the pressure that comes with that.
I know you’ll figure this independence thing out, sweetheart. Even at eight years old, you’re an old soul. You have a natural feel for which challenges you can handle. You’re so good at telling me when you need a rest and when you’re ready to go. You’re able to say exactly what’s worrying you. You trust Daddy and me when we promise that Jesus will be with you.
I promise to remember that growing up is hard to do. I will also remind you that Third Grade is filled with so many cool adventures—and you are so good at discovering.
You are our family’s darling, our baby, our budding-engineer, our character. We all love you so much.
I cannot wait to see what you become….