Yesterday I attended a chick-hatching breakfast in Ben’s class. All of us moms brought muffins and juice and we looked at the baby chicks that had hatched a few weeks earlier and were chirping in a pen in the corner of the room. The kids took turns showing the moms and dads all the writing and journaling and picture-taking the class had done which chronicled the journey from eggs to the now full grown chicks that are to be taken to a farm on a field trip scheduled for Monday.
Ben is not the most physically demonstrative child, in fact sometimes when I hug him, he responds by telling me that he would like to get a “Do Not Disturb” sign taped to his forehead. But when I walked into the class, Ben got a look of extreme happiness on his face and returned my hug by melting into me. I stayed for about an hour, during which time he continued to hug me a bit, touch me, put a finger on my arm, and drape his arm across my leg as I sat next to the chick pen. When it was time to go, he asked me to stay a little longer, which I did. And when I left he gave me a big hug and a kiss on my cheek.
When I was putting him into bed that night, I said, “Ben, did you like having Mommy in your class with you?’
“Oh yes,” he said. “I really liked it.”
“What did you like about having me there?” I asked.
Without pausing or blinking he said, “Having you there made me feel empowered.”