I haven’t been feeling overly sentimental lately. I’ll admit, I can lose myself to the sentimental dark side from time to time, but I’ve been coasting close to “normal” these days. But, today. Wow, today! Today, I packed up a box of baby clothes to consign. Today, A and I watched cows and moo-ed and said hello to each one of them individually and laughed. Today, we received N‘s track assignment for year-around elementary school. We registered him for kindergarten in January and I had all the big feelings and emotions about it … and then, I just kinda let it go. So, even though I was expecting it, seeing his name with the word “kindergarten” and “track” beside of it … it just felt too real. Too soon. Honestly, my first thought was that maybe I could just toss that little postcard in the trash and pretend it wasn’t happening. Out of sight, out of mind. Eeek!
Somewhere between the packing of the baby clothes, the sweetly-innocent cow watching with A and the whole kindergarten thing, I felt my heart crack a little. It caught me off guard – the intensity in which my feelings came rushing in. It slammed me down hard. An actual, physical ache grew inside of me. “This is it”, I thought. I will never have these silly “moo-cow” moments with N again. He’s 5 and a half now. He’s big. He’s a kid now. And, A will turn 3 this summer. Her baby-ness is disappearing just as quickly as it arrived. She’ll start pre-school, which is still feels safe and easy to me. But, he’ll start kindergarten and the “school years” are foreign and the unknown of it all is terrifying. It can’t be our time already. And, yet it is.
It’s hard to let go and watch them grow,
They are warmth and stickiness,
They are light and life,
They are tears and love,
They are real and honest,
They are big emotions and little kisses,
They are cuddles and bear hugs,
They are boo-boos and band-aids,
They are clingy and demanding,
They are joy and innocence,
They are pirates and princesses,
They are artists and explorers,
They are mighty and small,
They are good and gold,
They are contradictions and happy wishes,
They are full and pure,
They are chases and giggles,
They are crayons and play-doe,
They are books and bedtime prayers,
They are fruit snacks and apple juice,
They are unicorns and dinosaurs,
They are sunshine and rainbows,
They are everything,
To me, they are the world,
And, it’s hard.
It’s hard to let go and watch them grow …
I have decided, after a few tears, that maybe we are ready. Well, I know N is ready, so it’s really just me that I’m worried about. Maybe kindergarten won’t be so bad. I’ll breathe in and out and walk forward with my head held high. I will always have a special place in my heart for my tiny babies and my toddler babies and my pre-school babies. But, time marches on. It is indeed, our time. I will embrace this next chapter with open arms. This season at home with my littles has been precious and sweet and it will always remain beautiful in my heart, where it can live forever. But, I can allow myself to let go a little and not grieve so hard. I can allow myself the grace and peace I need to willingly enter this next chapter. It will go just as fast and hold just as much joy and beauty. Maybe, even, without the fog that comes with babies, I’ll be able to truly open my heart to the journey and enjoy the whole, sweet, wild, messy, wonderful, ride. Here’s to kindergarten. We got this, y’all!
Note: If you are in Wake County and need more information on the school system or kindergarten registration, click HERE.