Dear Kindergarten Moms,
It’s not an easy thing, sending your baby into the world. This year I’ll send my youngest off to Kindergarten. I wrote about the struggle here–Is Post Toddler Depression a Thing? All of the emotions, excitement, and sadness that I felt when I sent my older two to school are back. You’d think I’d be used to this by now.
Here I am again, sleepless nights before Kindergarten starts. I can’t help but lay awake and think about our time together. It seems like just yesterday I was being wheeled into the delivery room to meet my little ones for the first time. They handed my this little human, and from that moment on they were mine to care for and love. Then they started growing and with each passing year, I realized they were becoming more independent and the time was approaching when I would drop each and every one of them off for their first day of school.
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As I lay awake remembering the first time they walked and talked, suddenly a panic rushes over me. Wait! I can’t do this. Their teachers won’t know that they need no less than 14 hugs before lunch. They won’t know what it means when my youngest says she wants Elsa hair! I haven’t talked to them enough about bullies, maybe I’m a bad mom for not better preparing them. What if they get scared, what if they need me and they feel like I have abandoned them because I’m not there? YES, MOMS…WE ALL DO IT! We worry, stress, play the what-if game, and completely lose our minds the night before we send our little ones off to school. I assure you, this is perfectly normal and expected.
The morning will come and you will wake up your excited and nervous school kid. You’re going to try your best to force a smile. You won’t let them see your heartbreaking because today is a BIG step in their lives and you have always been there to love and support them, today is no different. They might think you’re a bit clingy because you hug them all the way to the breakfast table, you over-do it with some elaborate breakfast of their choice. All of these little services are for you as much as they are for them. That’s okay mom, you do whatever it is you need to do.
then drop off and goodbye hugs…
Now its time to drop them off, this is the moment you have been dreading more than all others. The final kiss, the final hug, and the squeeze of their little hand. They might cling to you or they may be so excited that they walk off without saying goodbye (I’m not sure which is worst) but however it happens, this is a HUGE moment for the both of you. They are starting their long school career and you are learning how to let them go.
When you drive away you might shed a few tears, you might call your mom, sister, or a good friend and hope that they can comfort you. However, let me reassure you that there will come a moment when you will realize that the worst is over, you did it, and you’re going to be okay. The house might be a little quieter, mornings a little busier, and schedules more chaotic, but it is all something you can handle. Remember holding your baby for the first time, feeling that overwhelming doubt that maybe you are not capable of doing this? Remember when they were 3 and fell off the bed? You rushed them to the ER wondering if you could handle it. No matter what comes up in our lives, as moms, we just do it, we just make it, we survive. Motherhood changes us. It gives us the ability to cope and endure. So, Kindergarten Moms, you are going to be okay. You always have been and you always will be.
BECAUSE YOU ARE A MOM!