These two little words can mean many things: i.e. coupon collecting, a haircut, assurance that one can no longer have children (all of these will be applied to our lives sometime in the not-too-distant future)... But this week the sound of snipping is the cutting of apron strings. My little baby boy has started school. Sigh.
I know, I know, it was bound to happen. But I think I struggled with it a little more than usual. Sam just turned 4, and yesterday was his first day in Pre-kindergarten. Now, preschool is one thing, but this is all day, every day, in the DC public school system! Do you see why I'm having feelings of guilt/anxiety/sadness/fear?
If that in itself is not self-explanatory enough, I can elaborate. So many horrible things could happen at school. He could get ignored. He could get sick. He could feel rejected by me. He could choke on the grapes I packed in his lunch. He could get in trouble with the teacher and hold a grudge against organized education for the rest of his childhood. Shall I go on?
OK, I know these things are the crazy, normally unspoken (and probably better off left that way) thoughts of a stay-at home mom sending her first son to school. I have to admit, though, that each of these scenarios crossed my mind in the past 72 hours. And then I laughed at myself.
Yesterday was his first day, and it was great. There has been so much anticipation of Pre-K that Sam has been talking about it all summer. When he woke up yesterday and I told him that today was his first day, he just lit up and simply said, "really?" The whole family made the trip to school, and although the drop-off scene was pretty chaotic (picture 20 families trying to check in, drop off the things from their school supply lists, keep track of their nervous pre-k-er, and hold it together themselves), he was in his element. In fact, I found that I was the one with a lump in my throat, which I bravely gulped down as I smiled and hugged him goodbye.
Happily, he had a great day, and this morning as he was getting dressed he said, "I LOVE school!" (Lets hope that lasts for the next 12-16 years. :) Not only that, but wow, am I amazed at how quiet my days are. I get so much done! So now, instead of just feeling sad and worried, I waffle between that and relishing in the gift of time and space I've been given. I'm really relishing, too, because come December, life will bring it's new twists and blessings.