Tomorrow is the big day. The day we have been waiting for for the past 5 years. Our daycare bill is dropping by $120 per week. Biggest is starting kindergarten.
I always thought I would be perfectly fine when this day came. Actually, I have been fine all summer. The idea of lower daycare costs is a dream for every working parent. I love the idea of Biggest going to school, riding the bus with all the other kids (which in my head is fun and does not teach her bad words or how to pick on other kids), bringing home homework, and us checking it over with her nightly. Sounds dreamy, right?
This summer, we went shopping for back to school clothes together (mostly) and everything was fine. This morning, we lopped off over 6 inches of hair for her back to school haircut. Admittedly, I was nervous about going from my little girl’s long flowing locks to a chic little bob. With each snip of the scissors a piece of my baby fell to the floor. Biggest now looks more like a girl who is growing up, and less like my little baby. I thought the haircut would be the hardest part. Boy, was I wrong!
So this afternoon, Biggest, Littlest and I marched into the elementary school, armed with her bags of supplies (including, but not limited to, a box of crackers, three packs of crayons and eighteen glue sticks). Biggest seemed to know where she was going, even though mom was clueless. We found her classroom and met Biggest’s teacher, Mrs. D. So far so good, right? WRONG!
As soon as Mrs. D and I started talking, the waterworks began. Thankfully, Mrs. D. is either used to it or is an amazing person, because she was great about handling the hot mess mom in front of her (I am an ugly, face scrunching crier). After a few minutes, I calmed down and we got everything put away in its proper place in the classroom. Neither Biggest nor Littlest seemed to notice their mom in tears just minutes before, probably due to the bag of candy that Mrs. D had the forethought to provide (like any self respecting mom, I love bribes and distractions). We filled out our remaining paperwork, met a few other families, and sat down to watch Mrs. D’s presentation on what would happen in kindergarten.
Of course, it isn’t that easy. As soon as the presentation was over, Mrs. D looked directly at me and asked if I felt better about kindergarten. Wrong question to ask, Mrs. D! The waterworks immediately started again, and, for the second time, Biggest and Littlest did not seem to notice, attention still focused on the bag of candy they were waiting to devour. The other mom in the room sympathetically said she was in the same emotional state with the added bonus of baby blues. It could be worse, I guess.
We did manage to make it out of the classroom and have school pictures taken with no more waterworks. But now that it has happened, it seems just the mere thought of Biggest going to kindergarten all day is enough to set me off. I know that she is ready, but I am just not sure I am.
Good luck to all the other parents at the bus stop tomorrow. I am afraid I may be causing a ruckus. This mama may be stylishly attired for first day of school photos with Biggest but the tears will probably be ruining my makeup.