We survived the first day of school with minimal casualties. I always forget from year to year how tired and worn out the kids are the first week of school, especially the first day. New school moms – put that tidbit in your back pocket. Keep your schedules open for the first two weeks of school. We had a successful first day, and everyone came home happy and liking their new classrooms, teachers, and friends. It was nice to start school at the same school that we went to last year. Two new schools in two years was hard. I pride myself on taking moving in stride, but sometimes the reality simply is that it can be hard. It was nice to go to school yesterday and know where the classrooms were and how things at school worked.
This year back to school is just as much about me as it is about them. I sent my last child to school. For the first time in 9 years, my time during the day is mine to do what I want with it. I spent the morning running some errands and treated myself to some time in a coffee shop. In all honesty, the freedom felt wonderful and scary all at the same time. I am using this time to work on some of my passions – helping mothers find their way (more on that soon), learning more about food and nutrition, and taking better care of myself. I no longer have the “I have no time excuse”. I have lots of time. I just need to learn to use it wisely. My goal is to do everything that I need to do during the school day so that when my children come off of the bus, my time is theirs. I really love this season of motherhood, and don’t want to miss a second of it.
William started 4th grade. He is becoming someone that I truly like being around. Even if he wasn’t mine, I’d like to spend time with him. He is kind, funny, and has a little bit of my snark. He is totally in the tween phase. Last night he asked his dad, “Dad, why are the pretty girls so mean? They tell us that they don’t want us near them on the playground, then they chase us.” Here we go. Are we ready for this? Last weekend we dropped him off at his first night party. We needed to pick him up at 9:45. He still goes to bed at 7:30, and now he is going to parties to “hang out with his friends”? Whether we like it or not, he is growing up.
Ava started 2nd grade. 2nd grade happens to me one of my favorite years of all. When I was a teacher, 2nd grade was the year when they start off as little kids, and left as big ones. The growth is miraculous. Physically, mentally, educationally, it is a wonder to experience. She is an artist and so creative. She has spent the last few weeks making a miniature world for her American Girl dolls. This girl can do amazing things with some scrap paper, markers, and tape. My personal favorite was a box of popcorn made out of cotton balls that she somehow made to look exactly like the real thing, she even colored them yellow and shaded it. #proudmama. She loves to read, and is so sweet and caring.
Clay started kindergarten. I surprisingly held it together, I really thought that I would be a mess. My husband was the one to take the hit. He (and Will and Aves) had been giving me a hard time about sending the baby to school, but he was the emotional one at drop off. It was a big deal for all of us. I absolutely coddle this child and the idea of him being still so little in a sea of big kids was hard for my mama heart to take. But he is ready and I need to let him go. He loves school and really does well in a school environment. He was so tired when he came home yesterday. He cuddled on the couch and watched Bubble Guppies while the older kids did homework and I signed a million forms and papers. This morning he was sleepy and told me that he didn’t want to go to kindergarten today. “Kindergarten is too long.” He will be fine in a week or so.
This morning I had my moment. I dropped them off in the car line, and he walked into school like he owned the place. He leaned over the front seat, gave me a kiss, and hopped out of the car without even looking back. I know that this is what I should hope for. An easy transition – he feels safe enough at school that he has not a single worry. I am grateful that he is happy, even if it breaks my heart a little.