Mark my place

He was four when we began reading about Mr. Tumnus, Lucy's first friend in Narnia. We divided the pages of the entire series among 300+ bedtimes. Every now and then, I replaced the 1950s language of Britain with a more contemporary word. Every now and then, I skipped a scary part. I was sure most of it was sailing far over the head of my little boy in the stretchy cotton, cowboy pajamas.

But I was wrong. He was six months shy of five when he wished Aslan would appear again within the pages of the story. "Because," he explained, "Aslan could make it all better--kind of like God..."

We finished the series over two years ago. This morning, he picked up The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe and began to read. On the way to school, he leaned forward in his seat. "Hey, Mom. Guess what part I'm in? Lucy's at Mr. Tumnus's house. The other kids haven't come into Narnia yet. And I was just looking ahead--chapter 12 is Peter's first battle. Oh man, I can barely wait till I get to that one!"

So this is what it feels like. To see what two short years can do to a little boy. To grieve ending and celebrate beginning in a single breath, moment, word. This book marks for me the places, then and now. Like a landmark you once saw as a child, now appearing along the highway, looking so much smaller to adult eyes, showing in an instant how far you've come. How much he's grown. How it's only the start.

Shared today with the beautiful community Emily hosts on Thursdays at Imperfect Prose.

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