The First Day of School – This Year It’s Not a Happy Day For Me!

I don’t know about anyone else, but I’m having a hard time this year with my little diva heading back to school – and it’s just the first day!

At first, I thought it was the fact that her classroom this year strangely resembles a portable – oh our surprise at registration! That dreadful word “portable” rose off the page and bounced before my eyes so wildly I couldn’t even see the teacher’s name. I remember driving past the school this summer wondering which poor sucker’s would be doomed to those “buildings” only to discover it was my very own female child!  I sat in that “classroom” completing registration paperwork and I was so bothered I couldn’t even remember simple things like my address. It was then I know something else was afoot.

Here’s what happened:  Late last year, I was working in a corporate office and I disliked it immensely. It left me feeling like I was sacrificing valuable time that should be spent with my little one. So my husband and I decided that at the end of the school year, I would depart to spend a summer of fun with my daughter. And what fun we had, playing the stereo loud and dancing around the house, singing Phantom of the Opera tunes when driving around, completing household projects together, planning our yard sale, sorting consignment items, school clothes shopping, finally cleaning her room (her not me this time), etc. – we reached several household goals together.

Did she get all those playdates I promised or trips, to the kiddie science centers for educational reasons – NO! Was I the perfect mother that ALWAYS fed her the most nutritious food ever because I was home and could make the best snacks in town – NO! Sometimes there were cookies, Sonic grilled cheeses, Velveeta shells and cheese microwave cups, happy meals and Mommy’s sweet tea with extra ice trips to McDonald’s.

But what I really liked, no really loved, were the times, especially on “Homestead Mondays” when our only rule was pajama day all day, when she simply chose to curl up next to me and laid on my lap or shoulder while watching a mommy-approved kid show on Netflix or PBS and seemed completely content and felt totally safe. We’d sit there hugged up for the longest time and I was reminded each day of why the sacrifices we make for our children DO matter no matter how much a cost it may be to our time, careers and our to-do lists.

So in short, and five paragraphs later, I wanted to say that registration morning forced me toward my harsh truth – that come today, I was going to lose my beloved sidekick – and I indeed really miss my kid and I’m not doing well on this dreadful, teary, 1st day of school. I even reached behind me to hold her hand on the way to school. Oh I know I might sound a bit dramatic, that given time I’ll adjust to the glorious silence, and that I’m choosing to ignore the way she dropped my hand like a hot potato when time to exit the car without a goodbye in her excitement, but I don’t want to right now. I’m watching the clock until I get the privilege of picking up my bundle of joy from school – something no one else can do right now – because until more are sent home this week – I’m the only one with a car rider tag!

Hope you enjoyed your summer!

Stephanie Out-

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