The 5th grade field trip to Disney is a rite of passage here in Florida (it happens again as a senior but that is an entirely different story)
It was an amazing day. Seeing these kids go to Disney with 200 of their classmates, children they have known in many cases since Kindergarten. Remembering them as kindergartners… this one cried, that one still ate paste. Now she is taller than me and he looks me in the eye when he speaks finally.
Even as parents it felt like a milestone, a graduation of sorts.
We are the same parents who have been going to The Zoo and City Hall, and the Symphony for the last 6 years. Sometimes we don’t even know each other’s name – we’re just Sally’s Mom, or Joey’s Dad. We know each other by hat and sunglasses and hairdo. But we know each other – because 4 years ago you helped me find the lost kid in my group and 2 years ago I took your group when you started feeling bad in the heat. We are not friends but we know each other, we trust each other. We’ve looked out for each other, we’ve had each other’s back.
And this week we jumped off a cliff and took the whole crew to Disney and sat back and watched them run as pack, only supervising them from a distance and we talked and laughed and reminisced. I don’t imagine that middle school field trips will be be the same. They won’t need us like they did in elementary school. This particular group of parents won’t come this way again.
So here’s to the Field Trip Parents for the Class of 2020. We made it through six years of Florida sun, community theatre, and snotty museum docents , we kept them alive, unscathed, and awake through Alligator Farms, Zip Lines, and Peter and the Wolf.
We always made it home with as many as we left with.
They were all good days. Salute.