"Do you have your W2P?" I ask from the driver's seat as kiddo jumps onto the curb.
"Water, watch, phone...yup, I have them!" he assures me, flicking his wrist, patting his side and then turning around to show me the water bottle in his backpack pocket.
"Okay, have a good class! I'll be waiting in the parking lot when you're done."
We briefly touch fingers in goodbye before he shuts the minivan door, and I watch him walk up to the Physical Sciences building, shoulders slightly hunched from the weight of his backpack, but steps springy and confident. He likes where he is going to and it shows.
Although he has been doing this for two semesters now, I still smile wistfully at my 12-year-old's receding back before turning into the parking lot to find a spot where I will spend the next 90 minutes reading a novel, answering emails, researching new books and/or planning what to cook for dinner while he attends his engineering physics lecture at the community college.