Sean was on top of the world yesterday.
Ok... so it was only the roof of our one-story house but close enough...
It was time to clean the gutters, something that is becoming more than a twice-a-year project as the winds swirl and drop the entire neighbourhood's batch of whirly-birds/helicopters and tree buds onto our rooftop and they eventually wind their way into our gutters.
It's a disgusting, dirty, smelly job most of the time and yesterday's was no exception.
Usually, Rich will head up to the roof by himself and dig in with rubber gloves, flipping the goop over the side and into an awaiting garbage can.
And generally, I am the one helping to schlep the garbage can along as he works his way around the perimeter of the house.
Ahhh, but no more....
I have a teen-ager!!
I have a son!!
I have Sean!!
And it's time that he takes over more of the man-chores around the house than simply picking up after Smokey.
I decided to finally plant what was left of my sad, pathetic, withered by record heat, flats of flowers with the girls, comforting Ashley as any little speck of dirt or splash of water landed on her princess flip-flops.
Sean and Rich did the man work.
Then, as things were getting cleaned up, Sean asked to go on the roof. He's asked before but I never let him get more than a few steps up the ladder. I could say that it was mostly due to my worrying about him not paying attention and taking a head-first dive off of the shingles or daring himself to step on the gutters to see if they would hold his weight.
I could save face and say all that, but I won't...
I'm sure it was true years ago but geesh, he's 13!
Fact is, I'm afraid of heights. And just like when I'm cold I'm telling them to put on a sweater, if I'm afraid then they should darn well be, too!
But he wasn't.
You should have seen his face as he walked around the roof with Rich. His dad held his hand for a moment and then let go.
Oh, I could have died....
But I didn't.
Sean loved it up there. He walked around. He listened to Rich as he explained what this vent or that vent was for.
And then he sat down and enjoyed the view. He enjoyed the quiet and the warmth of the shingles.
We took pictures - lots of them.
With the apron strings/umbilical cord nearly shredded, Carissa asked for her turn.
What the heck....
So the two oldest kids had their time with their dad, taking in a moment that will be unique to the three of them.
And I stayed below with my feet firmly planted on the ground, Ashley lovingly lashed to my side with the remnants of the umbilical cord, and camera in hand capturing another first for the kids.
Could it have come years sooner if Sean had not been autistic?
Sure. After all, Carissa is two years younger than Sean.
But Sunday, seeing Sean and his dad traversing the rooftop, I think the timing was absolutely perfect.