the middle of the teeter totter is nice…balanced, safe…the middle of the road opinion is not necessarily swaying one way or another…it’s in the middle and the middle of the stick is certainly not the short end of the stick…the middle is where it can be comfortable to meet. Now let me share with you about the middle that we are currently facing. It appears at this point to be nothing about comfort, or safety or balance for that matter. It is a towering giant in my house right now…in my daughters heart and by connection to her…in my own heart as well. Middle School is a huge deal! There are many more teachers, new faces, hallways, lockers, homework assignments and feelings to negotiate. It is mornings fraught with anxiety and crying, nervousness and looks of, ‘how could you Mama? I just want to be with you don’t you understand?!’ Believe me, I am listening to her and am trying hard to understand as best I can what she is feeling. She is my first born, my baby girl…it breaks my heart to see her struggling so much. I am trying my best to be firm and loving and to rally the support she needs and deserves as she grows through this transition. I am thankful for our evenings together as we talk and snuggle and I reassure her. I am not too fond of the drop off when she cries and it is so huge to her that she doesn’t want to even face it. I know that she will grow to enjoy it and what she has to offer to it. I am proud of her no matter what and will continue to be strong for her even if I am crying when I drive away…just like she is as she heads to homeroom. We will get through this together my girl and I…
There has been a lot of anxiety and worry to the build up of my last born child’s entrance into the world of kindergarten…the beauty of it has been that I have grown tremendously. So many facets of my being have grown…the mom in me, the teacher, the woman and also the little girl.
Here is a picture of my sweet boy as he waited for his teacher on his first day. As I look at this picture I see many things that you may not, and could not see. The mom in me was cradling him in my arms, holding him tight, not wanting to let him go…the teacher in me is kneeling stoically beside him giving him the thumbs up and telling him what an amazing superstar he is…the little girl in me is standing bravely next to him and holding his hand because it is also my very first day of kindergarten.
In reality I am behind the lens of my camera, heart heavy and crying a little and viewing this incredible five year old standing before me. He is ready, he is bursting with anticipation, he is proud and most of all, I see beyond measure, he is equipped. I print and laminate the photo so I may look at it all day long…I keep close, the shirt that he wore yesterday and forgot at preschool…and I take a deep breath of trust and exhale belief. Belief that he is okay, belief that I am okay. When I arrive at the school that I teach at, I am welcomed by hearts that love mine, hugs to comfort me and pictures drawn with love by the preschoolers that fill so much of my heart five days a week. A beloved co teacher so intuitively sensitive to my grief has led the children to this activity. I know I am right where I am supposed to be….
I pick him up from school six and a half hrs later…he is still grinning with the excitement of his day and I can see that he has also grown today…and another journey begins…for both of us.