Both boys were so excited to begin school- Luca in Grade 1 and Levi in Preschool. They had new clothes, new shoes and new backpacks and lunch kits. They had been wearing their indoor school shoes around the house in anticipation.
In the last few weeks of August, I was counting down til school was back in. The bickering, whining and fighting were really getting to me.
Then September 4th came- the day we'd all been waiting for.
The boys ate and got dressed in their First Day outfits, had faux-hawks gelled into their hair, backpacks on and out the door.
Chris went in to work late so he could join me in taking the boys to school.
First to be dropped off was Luca. Hand in hand, him and I walked to the doors. The Friday prior, we had gone to meet his teacher and he had chosen a desk and a coat hook. He was ready and eager. Before the bell went, he hugged and kissed me and ran to join his friends in the line up at the doors.
I anxiously waited for him to file inside, and put his shoes on the rack. I waited until I could no longer see him. Then I turned around and walked to the truck where Chris and Levi were waiting. I barely got in and got my seatbelt on before the tears began to fall.
I don't know why Grade 1 was difficult for me. Luca had already done a year of preschool and a year of kindergarten, so why was this transition so much harder for me? The only reason I can think of is that he is away from me for 7 hours a day- more hours than I will spend with him during a regular weekday. He's old enough to have lunch at school, and navigate a day without me helping him.
Part of me really does feel like "Grade 1 today, University tomorrow". Its such a cliche but really, WHERE DOES THE TIME GO?!
Anyway, back to the day. With me wiping my tears, Chris began the drive to Carstairs, where Levi attends preschool. Levi chattered the 15 minute drive and was also very eager to rush into school. Chris and I both walked him up and into the class.
Without any hesitation, Levi hung up his coat and backpack, put his lunch kit on the shelf and went to sit on the carpet and put on his shoes. I followed, thinking he may need his Mommy a bit, but no. He immediately started visiting with the friends he already knew and no doubt making new ones. I hugged and kissed him goodbye and was dismissed with a little wave.
Holding hands, Chris and I walked down the hall and out of the building, a brand new chapter in our book opened. And again, I fought tears.
I was eager to pick up Levi and hear about his day so I left early and sat outside the school until it was time to go in. I just needed to be there.
I was greeted with a huge smile and a bear hug and tales of how fun preschool is. He told me of the dragon story they read, the hockey they played in the gym, snack and lunch at the tables and the dressup clothes he wore while playing with friends. He said he didn't really feel like drawing a picture when the other kids did so he just didn't. He was disappointed when I told him he'd have to wait until Thursday to go again.
We got home with just a little while to play before we walked to get Luca from school. Luca also came rushing out with his arms open for a hug, a big smile on his face. He said Grade 1 was awesome but couldn't remember what he did except for the "jitter juice" they made to take their jitters away. (juice, pop and whipped cream apparently). Later he said that he had fun at recess, played playdough and decorated writing books.
Both my boys had a fabulous first day and are excited for school. Now that I've had my little cry sessions, I'm excited for them. And I have a feeling I may just enjoy my 2 mornings a week kid free.... ;)