Yesterday was a big day at our house. My 5-year-old started kindergarten.
1) Still sleepy. 2) Goofing around. 3) Mommy: “If you don’t let me get one good picture, I’m taking away Skylanders forever!” 4) The path to Sunrise. 5) Being comforted by one of his teachers. 6) All grins after school. 7) Breakfast for dinner.
It’s been an interesting path to this day. Earlier this year, I posted about how confident I was that our neighborhood school was the right school for him, but admitted that I was experiencing some mother’s guilt because I didn’t feel like I’d done my due diligence when it came to schools.
Well, I was wrong.
As good as our neighborhood school is, after a few visits there this spring and seeing how Jackson reacted to such a big, big place, my husband and I decided that he needed to start elementary school in a different, smaller environment. And that started a panic- and stress-filled search for his perfect school. (Now, no school is perfect, but I think we’ve found his perfect school. A place where he feels safe, loved, nurtured and inspired to learn.)
We made it through day one without any tears. That’s what everyone always wants to know.
But did you cry, mommy?
And I’ll answer that, in a bit.
I was certain that my husband would cry because he’s been making weepy comments to me all week about “our boy growing up.” I threatened him that he could not, under any circumstances, cry in the classroom. I didn’t want him to telegraph his emotions to Jackson. Or to me.
Well, when it came time for us to say our goodbyes, I was the one who had to choke back the emotion in my voice as five years flashed through my head. Feeling his first kick. Meeting him in the delivery room. Breastfeeding. His first bath. The day he rolled over for the first time. Crawling. His first steps. His first birthday. His first temper tantrum in the Costco parking lot. His first words. Discovering his love of dinosaurs. Playdates. Wiggly haircuts. His first day of preschool. Potty training. Peeing outside. Pooping outside. More potty training. Learning more than I ever wanted to know about dinosaurs. Reading to him. Having him read to me. Receiving my first, “whatever mom,” accompanied by an eye roll. Hearing, “You’re the best mom ever.” Preschool graduation. Skylanders. One last summer vacation. Playing Legos. Picking them up. Stepping on Legos that didn’t get picked up. Watching him dive to the bottom of the pool. Frolicking with him in the ocean. Assuring him that everyone is nervous on the first day of school…even mommies and daddies.
Wow, what a day. What a life. What a future.
And I’ve taken too much of your time with my memories of the day. This is Jackson’s milestone. His day to chronicle. So, I turn things over to him for a few dispatches from kindergarten, or “Sunrise,” as it’s called at his school:
“Hope had cool chopsticks. They had a camel on them.”
“Pat and I really connected.”
“They didn’t have any dinosaurs. Not a single one.”
“I didn’t eat much lunch because William and I were talking up a storm. Everybody was laughing.”
“We had rest time but it wasn’t very comfortable because we didn’t get to use our towels.”
“There was one boy who really liked me, and I had to tell him a couple of times that we’re all best friends. I learned that at my preschool. I don’t remember his name.”
Mommy: “Did anyone get in trouble at school today?” Jackson: “Well, kinda. The boy who really liked me, well he was talking to me when the teacher was talking and he had to sit in a chair.” Mommy: “Did you get in trouble, too?” Jackson: “Well, I didn’t have to sit in a chair.” Mommy: “But did you get in trouble? Jackson: “I didn’t have to sit in a chair.” Mommy: “Bruce, did you get in trouble today at work?” Bruce: “Well, I didn’t have to sit in a chair!”