Wednesday, August 26, 2009
the third first day of school
today was the third time i've taken luke to his first day of school.
two years ago, it was the blue dolphins class, a three-half-days-per-week class of four year olds at a local church. i cried very much when i dropped luke off; he, on the other hand, had to be reminded to give me a hug goodbye, charging off as he was into the classroom without a second glance.
last year, it was the bears, a four-half-days-plus-lunch-per-week class of five year olds at another local church. i teared up a bit, which i tried to hide behind my sunglasses; luke noticed as he gave me a big hug goodbye and asked me why on earth i was crying and told me i would be fine.
today, it was kindergarten gold. elementary school: the real deal. five-half-days-plus-lunch-per-week in a class of kids who are six-ish going on twenty. he rushed into the room, again without a second glance, right along with some other friends who also left their moms in the dust. the teacher graciously invited us in to say goodbye. i requested a hug and a photograph in front of his cubby; he complied with a smile, and then went straight to his table task. free to go, and i was barely choked up.
except for one thing.
you see, the biggest factor in the getting-to-school hassle around here for the past two years has had nothing to do with school or luke or packing snacks or carpooling or take-home folders or any of the rest of it. getting to school--and especially getting into and out of school--around here has been a long, slow process ever since we started two years ago because of eliza. wake her up (inevitably, the only time she'd sleep was when we had to leave for school), bathe her (no small task, but necessary before we could go anywhere, as her nights were consistently messy), load her up (and her carseat was also no small thing), unload her (into her big ol'stroller/wheelchair that didn't fit in crowded school hallways or into her wrap that required a gymnastic feat to use and broke my back in the process)...just to complete the two-second drop off...and then head back to the car to start all over again. an extra hour's worth of work, all told, just to get luke to school, and a few short hours later, the same drill for pick-up.
will it surprise you to hear, then, that the thing that got me teary-eyed today wasn't that i was without my baby boy--my big school boy who reported later that he didn't miss me for even a quarter of a second because he was so busy--surprised? no, that was right and good and brought me great joy.
but without my baby girl.