The other night I opened a letter from the school where my daughter will attend kindergarten in the fall. It had information about upcoming orientation meetings, as well as a list of supplies she needs to have for Day 1:
- Color pencils/markers
- Plastic pencil box
- 1 B/W cover Composition Book
- Box of 12 glue sticks and 4 oz glue bottles
And the list goes on. I felt like I was going to puke. How is it possible that my child is old enough for this? Where did the time go? And why the hell do they need so much glue??
I have so much anxiety about this kindergarten transition. If I’m being honest I think it’s part of the reason I haven’t been able to blog or finish any other task lately (remember when I said I’d write 5 posts in the past week? Such a failure.). I have been in the throes of the school enrollment process for months now, and I’m struggling to find peace with the fact that my daughter will attend a school that was not my first choice. But deep down I think I’m also just struggling to find peace with the fact that she’s going anywhere at all.
A big part of me is truly excited for my daughter. I know she is ready for something bigger than preschool, and I can imagine she will thrive in a new setting, with more academic challenges, more structure, and diverse social interactions.
But then there’s part of me that is fearing the worst. Will she fit in? Will she make friends? Will she scowl at everyone because she’s in a mood or uncomfortable and be mistaken for a bully? Or will she get bullied? Will she become friends with kids who teach her terrible things that I cannot undo?
Generally I’m a *relatively* laid back parent. I tend to go with my gut and don’t spend a ton of time researching parenting strategies and techniques. Call me old-fashioned (or uninformed and clueless).
But in the past week I’ve purchased four parenting books. FOUR. It’s like I suddenly feel a need to implement new parenting practices, fix all of my daughter’s behavior issues, equip her with the skills to avoid any and all real world dangers, and ensure a seamless transition for all of us.
I’ll also go ahead and solve the hunger crisis while I’m at it.
I know I need to chill the eff out. In part because I don’t want my daughter to sense my nervousness and start to freak out too. I am trying. Really. I have moments of clarity when I am calm, optimistic and ready for this new phase.
But then I drive past the school and start crying like a baby. Or I watch the news and hear another school-related disaster story, and start crying like a baby. Did it always seem so harrowing to send your kid off to school?!
I need to get my head into a place of acceptance and optimism, and stop letting my emotions get the best of me. Note to self: this was probably not the best time to start a new hormone-infused birth control pill. So. Much. Ugly. Crying.
So here’s to moving forward, clearing my head, getting some stuff done, enjoying the summer with my kids, and figuring out a way to freeze time so they will stop growing up and stay like this FOREVERANDEVERANDEVER.
Ok fine, FINE. I’ll let go of the last one. Sheesh.