Yesterday was Little Man's first day of first grade and Kiwi's first day of her Tuesday/Thursday morning preschool. Here is how our morning unfolded.
7:30-I have been up for an hour and a half, am ready for the day and wondering why Little Man is still sleeping. I was anticipating having to wake Kiwi up, but Little Man rarely sleeps in. Calculate how long I can let them sleep before they need to get up (we did showers and laid out clothes the night before). Wonder for the millionth time why children always sleep in when there is somewhere to be.
7:40-Pack Little Man's lunch since he will now be in school ALL DAY LONG. Have a full circle nostalgic moment as I write my little boy a note on his napkin just like my mom used to do for me.
7:45. Go upstairs to wake the little students up.
(We let the kids decorate the wall space by each of their beds. Looking at all those stickers makes me cringe sometimes, but I figure I should let them have some say in their own room)
Met with resistance (Little Man's head under his blanket).
7:50-Finally some success
7:51-Hear this little guy up in his room.
8:05-Downstairs to eat breakfast
8:20-Mason is strapped in his stroller in the garage and both big kids are ready to go. Mentally congratulating myself on getting everybody up and out the door on time and without any meltdowns. I look down and see that neither older child has shoes on. Upon trying to get back into the house, they encounter a locked garage/laundry room door. No problem, I go to find the hidden key in the garage. But it' not in it's hiding place. In fact, nothing is in it's place, because Mike and I have been working on rearranging the garage. Call Mike in a panic praying he will answer his phone. He does and remembers where he placed the key. Key is found and shoes are put on feet.
8:23-Ask the kids to quickly pose for a picture in the grass before we leave. Each chooses where they would like to stand on the grass and refuses to move close to the other one. I offer to take a picture in each of their spots to avoid a fight that will make us late and they agree.
Two of my babies looking much too grown up for this mommy's liking.
8:35-Arrive at Little Man's classroom. Ask him to line up with the other children so I can get a picture. He doesn't want to.
8:36-8:40-Try to coax him to get into line.
8:40-Teacher starts ushering kids into class.
8:42-All the first graders are inside the building except for mine. All the moms are lingering outside the building. Little Man is clinging to me crying. I am using all of my energy to alternate between trying to convince Little Man that school will be fun and keeping myself from slipping into the full out ugly cry which would benefit no one. Kiwi is hovering around us. Mason is chilling in his stroller. Little Man's teacher, Mrs. M looks at us and says, "Oh dear." She assures me this is normal and tells Little Man that he can call or e-mail me later in the day. I try to respond to her kindness with some sort of intelligible answer, but am still trying to keep myself from losing it and can't manage much. Somehow, Little Man ends up in the classroom. Kiwi, Mason, and I leave with my tears now flowing. All of the other moms, who had just witnessed this scene, give me sympathetic looks and comments.
9:00-Drop Kiwi off at Miss Cindy's pre-school. I can hardly pry her away from the toys to let me take a picture and she doesn't even give me a backward glance as I leave. Thank goodness for that, because another scene like the one I had just had with her brother probably would have resulted in me throwing my hands up in the air and forgetting this whole school thing.
Miss Cindy and Kiwi. I am very happy that Kiwi was excited and had no problems going. It took her a couple of months last year before she felt comfortable going, so I was expecting some difficulty and was pleasantly surprised when there was none.
9:10-Start my very quiet walk home with just Mason. Call Mike to tell him about the morning. After being appropriately sympathetic, he offered the very practical solution of, "Next year, maybe I should do the first day of school." I am thinking that might not be too shabby of an idea.
9:30-Arrive home to find the following email waiting in my inbox from Mrs. M. "C is doing great. No tears and all smiles."
Did I mention that this wonderful woman described herself to me in a conversation held at orientation the previous day as a "mother hen?" She also lets the first graders out a couple of minutes before the rest of the school because "they are just so tiny and she doesn't want them to get swallowed up in the swarms of other kids," she asked for afternoon snacks for the kids because it's such a long day, and she encourages parents to come help in her classroom (Little Man's teacher last year was nice, but you were always kept out in the hall when volunteering) or come eat lunch with your student.
Mrs. M? Yeah, she's pretty much my best friend this week.
Today, Mason, Kiwi and I have had a pretty quiet day with Kiwi commenting several times that she would like to play with Little Man. This first grade is an adjustment for all of us.