How the First Day of School Affects a Mom
By: Brandy Black
My daughter started kindergarten. I remember the day my wife and I sat in a tiny Santa Monica office with a spiritual coach and tried to visualize our future kid. We had been experiencing infertility for close to 3 years and a friend of my mother’s recommended “an emotional reset” so we went, skeptically, begrudgingly and mockingly. She told us to picture the child that we would have and I saw her, she was a 5-year-old and reaching out to me. She had a whimsical spirit and a huge smile. Now, here I am, with my angel daughter who has begun elementary school. I call my children my angels because I believe they truly are a gift, that I prayed for, hoped for, cried about and ached to have. Now three beautiful creatures later I adore my life as a mother. I can imagine no better role to play in life.
The first day of kindergarten drop off both my wife Susan and I went along. I was strong, stronger than expected. Susan was supposed to be this way but I fall to pieces, usually. I was almost disappointed in my stoicism. I wanted more out of the first day but truth be told I was so worried about having everything ready for her, getting to school on time and being strong, that I was empty.
But day 2 wasn’t the same. I went alone, hand-in-hand with my daughter. “I’m not talking about being in Kindergarten anymore, I’m IN Kindergarten!” she said as we walked across the street to her school. The crossing guard guided us with her bright yellow vest and proud smile welcoming all the kids. We got to the kinder area and found the sign that read her teacher’s name. I chatted with other moms while Sophia shyly made friends. Suddenly the line began to move and the parents were discouraged from following. I watched the teacher walk away with the sign as my daughter marched proudly forward. It was a coming of age, a change for us both. She is moving into another era, one that doesn’t include me as much as it used to. I began to sob, this is the beginning, only the beginning. She will spend half of her day learning a language of which I only know two words. She will translate what the teacher is saying through pictures, hand signals and only the willingness to ask other students in true immersion fashion. I am overwhelmed and overjoyed. But she is thriving. I see it in her glow when she comes home and raves about kindergarten. In one week she has managed to grown up, with her first loose tooth and all and I will sit back and watch and hopefully be invited to join the ride as often as she will permit.