The Dude and I have been working on his Primary talk all week. After brainstorming and crafting his talk on service together (I asked him leading questions; he answered them in his own words), we selected visual aids. He helped me pick "pretty" pictures of Jesus, of people hugging, and also contributed some artwork:
(a very abstract picture of Jesus that I decided should remain unlabeled), and handwriting:
(He wrote it all himself, but decided to ask me for help in spelling "you" and "thank").
He's been increasingly excited about giving the talk all week. We practiced it a couple of times, and he woke up this morning ready to Go! We made it into Primary uneventfully - but during the scripture, the Dude bonked his head on the bench and proceeded to howl. He bleatingly made it back to where I was sitting and sobbed into my shoulder. Certain that he would be asked to give his talk any minute, I tried to calm him down because I did NOT want to end up giving his talk. Thankfully, they decided to insert all sorts of announcements right then, and he was raring to go again by the time they announced his talk.
As I knelt by him, I immediately regretted all the cautions I had given him about speaking too closely to the microphone because he spoke quietly and too far away from the microphone (it didn't help that his sister decided to raise her voice about then, too). After urging him to speak louder after every couple of sentences, by the end of the talk he was audible. He did a great job reading (even though I inserted one last-minute change on him), and was so sweet and earnest and eager that I almost started crying a couple times.
I think giving a talk in Primary was an important milestone I hadn't even realized was a milestone, but it made me very aware that my little boy is getting less little every day. When I take the time to really look at him - observe that his face is looking more boyish and less babyish, I am just overwhelmed with the thought that he is going to be gone before I even notice that he's grown up.
Right now, I think I'll just content myself to looking forward to the end of his current obsession with dying. I think the Big O will be grateful, too.