Hello there Kindergarten. So we meet again. I remember you quite well from a couple of years ago when you lured my older daughter into your lair of learning. Now, you’re back with all your fancy sight words and cutesy books. But, this time, you’re going for the jugular.
You’re about to take my baby girl.
Do you know the worst part? She’s actually excited about meeting you. Before you go around and brag to all your little ABC friends, I have some words for you.
I know you’re used to sucking up to all of your new recruits with the glories of snack time and gym class, but I’m not too happy about all the things that are going to change around here. This momma is one carrot stick away from some major water works. You see, baby girl and I have been together like peas and carrots from day one. Yeah, yeah I know, you’re little brother pre-k has had her for a few hours a day over the past two years. But, this is not the same. You’re taking her for almost the entire day. You’re going to get to have lunch with her. You’re going to get to see the little light bulb in her head go on when something she’s been trying so hard at finally clicks. You’re going to hear her little giggle all day long. I’ll just get your leftovers when she comes home and tells me all about how great her day was. Thanks a lot.
You know you’re taking on a big responsibility. Sure you have experience and some great references, but you need to really take this one under your wing. I know all the other mommas tell you this too. But, you should listen to me. I have friends…a lot of them…friends that carry bats. I think I’ve painted you a clear enough picture.
You see, although my baby girl is excited, I know she’s a little scared too. So am I. It’s a whole new world for her. It’s a world filled with new people, new ideas, new routines, new lessons…heck, even new crayons. Since I can’t be there by her side it’s your job to make sure she gets through it all okay. Got that? You need to guide her and let her know she is going to be just fine when she feels like she won’t be. You need to encourage her when she gets frustrated. You need to cheer her on for a job well done. You need to make sure she’s kind and doesn’t say any bad words. You need to make sure she knows her teddy will be waiting for her in the car afterschool just like she asked. Perhaps most importantly, you need to make sure she pees! And of course, she needs to wash her hands.
Kindergarten, are you up for the job?
You’re not just adding another player to your roster. You’re adding one of my all-stars. I know this is all part of the circle of life, blah blah blah, but I kind of liked the circle we’ve created over the years. I’m not ready to start another one just yet. But, I know the decision is not mine. You’re a pushy one Kindergarten with no wiggle room for giving me more time.
I wish I could make time stand still, but I know Kindergarten is just the beginning of letting go. It’s a baby step in what will be a lifetime of changes, challenges, accomplishments and even let downs at times.
So, Kindergarten, be gentle with my baby girl. Although she may act like a tough cookie, on the inside she’s a big softie.
One Misty-Eyed Mom
I can hear you sobbing as you write this
You know it!