He was born too early, the oldest, and so for many months he had a real age and a "corrected age", which took his prematurity into account and was used to gauge developmental milestones, weight, and length more accurately. By the time he approached kindergarten though, his prematurity didn't count anymore, and so he was eligible to go just before he turned five, though if he'd been born at term, he would have missed the cutoff date. I held him out one more year in part because I felt he could use it, but also because I felt ripped off; I should have had another year to eat picnic lunches in the park with him, to drape a blanket over him for an afternoon nap, to just be. I have never regretted that bonus year, that gift to us both.
It's awful to be happy about this, but today he's home due to an unfortunate poison ivy exposure. By "home", of course, I mean "running around town with me". And I love it. I miss him when he's in school for months on end*. He's funny and smart and adventurous, and I just like having him around. I'm ready for summer, for the joy of his company more often. Only 56 more school days on the "corrected calendar", which takes makeup days into account.
photo: day 10ish in Arlington Hospital NICU. This was our first view of his face without an intubation tube or oxyhood, although he was only able to be "out" for about a minute. As you can clearly see, he was the most beautiful baby on earth.
*It goes without saying that I miss the youngest, too, but he's not home today; therefore this post is not about him.