Bright-eyed and bushy tailed at 6:30am, he brushed his teeth, got dressed in the outfit he chose carefully for this day, then rushed to my room and urged me to wake up so we could get his snack ready for school. That’s right, today was William’s first day of Kindergarten, the day I’ve been anxious about for months and dreading in so many ways. I thought I’d be a complete mess, crying and crumpled at the bus stop or worse yet, running after the big yellow bus screaming “No! No! No! This isn’t right, he’s my baby, he’ll always be my baby!” Well, I am proud (and more than a little surprised) to report that no such shenanigans occurred and I didn’t do anything to embarrass myself or my growing boy.
Daddy stayed home to walk to the bus stop with us on this momentous first day of school. Rob’s presence actually helped me keep it under control (and his reaction to Sara’s demand for a diaper change right as we were getting out the door didn’t hurt either—nothing like a prickly hubby to distract me from my feelings about William's departure). Anyhow, Rob stayed behind to clean Sara up while the boy and I headed bus-ward. Thankfully, they caught up before the bus came—nothing was slowing our boy down this morning.
The nervous energy at the bus stop was palpable. Parents were pretty quiet but the kids were giddy and eager. Before the bus came up our hill, I stole a kiss on the cheek from William and then we heard that unmistakable sound. The kids all stumbled into a loose line, the bus stopped and flashed its red lights, everyone piled on, and just like that a massive yellow school bus packed with children drove off with my sweet boy......the sweet boy that I’ve rarely let out of my sight for the past five years… on a school bus… driving away from me… and I didn’t drop to my knees and curse the day… amazing!
Undaunted by our remarkable morning and realizing William was out of the picture for a few hours, Sara asked “how ‘bout we have some play dates?” but she happily settled for quality quiet time with Mom. We read piles of books then decided to decorate for a surprise First Day of School lunch party for her dear brother, “EEE-Yum.”
|He was downright exhausted when he stepped off the bus but mustered a smile for us|
|Balloons, ribbons, and his favorite "fancy" lunch helped restore his energy and keep him smiling|
I'm still not sure why, but this really wasn't a terribly emotional day for me. The days leading up to it were much more tense. Perhaps it is that I really like his teacher and have had several opportunities to see her in action and visit the classroom, perhaps it is that we got lucky with a small class size of only 16 students, most likely it is simply because of William's enthusiasm and excitement about starting "real" school... he made this easy for me. Oh, and there is always the possibility that the sprig of pine tree clipped to our fridge has helped keep me calm. William presented it to me a couple of weeks ago. He told his Dad, "this is for Momma for when I go to school. She can look at it when she misses me.” Dang, that boy breaks my heart with his sweetness sometimes.... uh oh, don't get me started.
Now for the really weird part: we will get up tomorrow and do this again, and again the next day, then the following week, and so on, and so on. We've entered a whole new world.