Okay, so many of you know me and read my posts on Facebook that I affectionately title, “From the Mommy Diaries”, so you know that I have been having anxiety attacks about the upcoming school year starting and my one and only child entering the educational system. Well, I would just like to ask one question, “Can I get a break for being emotional?” This transition from daycare to “big school” has been a huge adjustment in the Thomas household and it’s not just me.
We talked to Brennan about school each and every day to let him know that he would be attending a new school where he would meet new friends, learn a new language (French) and learn all kinds of new things. He seemed to be getting used to the idea of the “big school”, but would ask questions like, “Mommy, what if no one likes me? What if I don’t make friends at the “big school”?” I replied, “Well, Brennan if they don’t like you they can kick rocks and burn!” (Not my finest moment). I didn’t know what to say. My son had never shown such vulnerability when it comes to other’s perceptions. My mom said, “You should just remind him how many friends come to his birthday parties each year and that he will have lots of friends.” Okay, so her advice was definitely better.
So, let’s fast forward to today… his first day of school. He woke up on his own, asked for a banana and went into his bedroom to watch Disney Junior until it was time to get ready. We got dressed and I didn’t cry. We went outside to meet his dad who was all amped to capture photos of his first day. Brennan had his new “Jake and the Neverland Pirates” book bag armed with erasers, pencils, notepads, a change of clothes, crayons and all the other things on his list. I didn’t cry. We checked him into before care, showed him how to get breakfast and held his hand as he showed us where his classroom was (he remembered from last week’s Orientation). I didn’t cry. The teacher welcomed him and said, “Pick any seat.” He walked around and picked the seat in the back nearest to the end. No one was sitting near him. He always was a loner. I silently said a prayer and a young little boy, sat right next to him. There were at least 10 open seats remaining, but he sat right next to my baby. I thanked God for this small thing and knew he would be okay. As we left to say our goodbyes, he said, “Don’t go mommy! I want to go with you.” I told him, “You can’t go with me. I will pick you up from after care here in the cafeteria. You have to stay and learn and meet your new classmates. Remember, your new teacher, Ms. Clymer, has so many great things to teach you.” He simply replied, “Why? I want to go to my old school with Ms. Yolanda and Ms. Kim and all my old friends.” My heart broke. I was not going to cry. I was going to stay strong and explain to my baby the fundamentals of clipping the strings and letting him venture out in this world on his own. I looked him in the eyes and said, “Baby, Ms. Yolanda and Ms. Kim like Ms. Clymer and they want you to learn everything you can and then come back and tell them what you learned when your “big school” is closed. Can you do that?” He said, “Okay, mommy.” I then looked at the little boy who sat next to him and asked, “Hi, what’s your name?” He replied, “Caleb.” I said, “Hi Caleb, this is Brennan.” I turned to Brennan and said, “Brennan, meet Caleb. He will be your new friend.” I then held my head up high and walked out the door. I did peek in the classroom to make sure he didn’t cry (trust me, some kids were crying) and he just looked dejected, but he didn’t cry and neither did I.
We had survived. No tears and a clear understanding of next steps. I was emotional for the week or more leading up to the first day of school, but I have settled into this situation blessed and excited to know that I made the right choice, cried enough tears, worried and prayed that he would be okay. I have left it in God’s hands and I know that this is the first of many major transitions that I will go through, but dang it folks, “Can’t I get a break for being emotional? After all, he’s my one and only child.
So, I couldn’t resist putting some flicks up so you can see the first day. He’s not happy that I wanted to take photos, but doesn’t he look beautiful! My baby is a kindergartner.