It’s nearly here. Today is the eve of my youngest off to kindergarten. This milestone that
felt miles away is here. Tomorrow.
I blinked and he went from a baby to a kindergartener. And he’s even an ‘old’ kindergartener as his 6th birthday is in a few weeks. But he’s ready. I’m just not sure I am.
It’s been an incredibly hectic time frame as of late. All of my worlds are colliding — work, family, kids, friends — and I can feel the pressure all around me. I think I’ve gotten better at handling pressure over the years, but I admit. I’ve been feeling, sorta… over capacity as of late.
There is a light at the end of the tunnel and I’m trying to keep my eye on it. The pressure lets up in a few weeks, so I’m giving myself pep talks on keeping my perspective. Prioritizing. Recognizing this is a ‘moment in time’ and not forever.
But it’s hard to do. Hard not to give my kids the short end of the stick. And then beat myself up with guilt. Due to this, it would be easy to give myself a ‘pass’ on this milestone. Send my boy in the door with a kiss and a tear and run off to my other commitments.
But I’m determined not to miss this milestone. Because I know I can never get it back. And maybe it seems stupid or small. But not to me. Maybe he won’t remember tomorrow. But I will.
You see, tomorrow is the first day of school. My daughter starts 4th grade and is in a new multi-age program. She’s a bit nervous, was pretty upset that she’s somewhat segregated from all of her friends. We’ve been focusing a lot of time on it. Talking about it. Visiting the school. Meeting the teacher. Asking other parents. I’m pretty confident she’s in a good place and ready to go.
My little guy? Whatever. He seems unfazed. Unfazed it’s a new school. Unfazed he doesn’t know anyone in his class. Unfazed it’s a new teacher. And he’s not really asking for anything.
So, tomorrow, I give my daughter the pep talk and walk her in the door. My son and I have about an hour of class together and then it’s our last day. Our last day of my youngest being out of school. My baby is in kindergarten.
With a mountain of work and less than two weeks from a HUGE work event that I’m a point person on… I’m taking the day off. It may be a career limiting move. I know the timing is bad. And maybe a few years ago, I would have worked this last precious day. But not tomorrow.
It’s our day. My son and I. And I’m really looking forward to it. Five years from now, I won’t remember that work event. But I’ll remember his first day of kindergarten. His little backpack. The little chairs and the little table with his name on it. His excitement over the block corner. And watching his confidence to take on this new phase of life. Knowing I had a role in that and having to let go a little. And being in awe of my 5-year-old. Being in awe that’s he’s ready. Being in awe that he’s growing.
I remember my daughter’s first day of kindergarten. Her brimming with confidence. Being so proud of her.
Now, I’m ready to be proud of him. At least, I think I’m ready. Maybe I’m being melodramatic. Maybe nostalgic. I just don’t care. I’m going to be there.
And I don’t care how many mountains I have to move.