Two years ago I was no where near ready, emotionally, to send my baby off to preschool. I would get a knot in my stomach just thinking about it and couldn't imagine ever feeling "ready" to let my little girl go. Even a year ago, I was no where near ready but, this August, I am very ready, though still a little sad. I am so thankful that God allowed things to work out like this.
A few factors made the decision to send my daughter to preschool this year easier. One: the school is in a familiar setting for both me and my kiddo. That put both of us at ease because there is something comforting about a familiar setting. Two: She knows a handful of the kids attending her school and I know a few of the parents. That made me happy and it got Daisy more excited about starting school because she was eager to "play" with her friends more often. Three: It's only 3 mornings a week MWF from 9-12. It is such a short amount of time in all reality but, it's a wonderful little break for us both. The truth is that I have been desperately needing a little break each week and this will be perfect for refueling my very fried mommy brain. And for the record, it's not fried entirely because of Daisy...just life in general. Mom life, wife life and life life. Four: It's a change of scenery for my kiddo and it will present some new challenges to stretch and grow her. She is a super smart girl and she likes to explore new things and I'm not the best when it comes to creating a new activity every day like so many of my mom friends. School gives her many chances to discover and create. What could be more fun when you are 3??
I started talking to Daisy about preschool a few weeks in advance but, more intentionally the week before. She got to pick out a lunch bag from the store although she doesn't technically need it as she only takes a snack to school. Of course she picked a princess lunch bag. The kids don't take their own backpacks to school. Instead the school gives a canvas tote to each student so we decorated it with lots of glitter, flowers and birds per her request. She was very happy and I was too.
I attended a meet the teacher night with my hubby just a few days before school started and that was such a surreal first time experience for me. I vividly remember all of the nights that my mom came home from parent-teacher meetings that she had attended for me and my 3 siblings and it still blows my mind some days that I am now the adult...and the mom meeting my child's teacher and seeing her future classroom.
I looked around her adorable classroom and imagined all the fun things Daisy might do. Then I saw the dress up station and knew that she would most definitely be doing that and I chuckled to myself. I smiled as I saw where her tote would hang and where her art would someday adorn the classroom walls. Oh how the night tugged on these fragile mommy heart strings.
Bittersweet. It's one of the most perfect adjectives for describing motherhood. Even though my heart is finally ready to give my little girl wings and let her soar into preschool, I still ache inside over how quickly time flies and how fast my little girl grows.
Monday morning was an exciting morning! Daisy woke up early of course, just to throw things off but, it was evident that she was giddy and knew that that it was a special day. I swooped her up in my arms and snuggled her up in her chair while I made her a special breakfast. She watched a show and we chatted about her first day of preschool. I packed her a snack and got her dressed and then it was time to take pictures. I am familiar with the horror stories when it comes to taking pictures before school. I had zero expectations and I also made sure to give myself plenty of time so that we were not rushing or stressed. Fortunately, Daisy was more than happy to take a few pictures on the front porch and I made sure that both me and Daddy got in a picture with her also. She felt special and that made me very happy.
She was ridiculously happy to have new pink shoes to wear and she loved her new (used consignment) shirt because it had glitter on it. Love my girly girl oodles and oodles.
The pictures with the don't cry mom sign as well as the picture with her current interests and personality traits written down the side were inspired by Pinterest. Thank you Pinterest for keeping my brain in creativity mode overload 24/7 but, also for giving me simple and adorable ideas like these.
Love this picture of Daisy and her Daddy. So very happy that she inherited her Daddy's brown eyes:).
I had been a little worried for Daisy only because she didn't know anyone in her class. She is still getting the hang of the whole "play with other kids" thing and more often will play entirely alone unless encouraged otherwise. It takes her a long time to learn a friend's name and even longer to connect with a specific person. More often than not she would much rather talk with me and the parent's of her friends than with her actual friends. I didn't want her to feel uncomfortable not knowing anyone or to get left out...you know, all the normal things that any mom would worry about for their kiddo. Those were the only factors that gave me a little cause to worry and I am so thankful that there weren't more!
The great news is that she had a blast her first week of preschool. Thank you Jesus! We never had any tears or any sad departures at the classroom door. Every morning she gave me a little kiss and then she bravely walked into her class without looking back. I'm so thankful for that because it made it SO much easier for me to feel confident that she would be okay. I felt peace. What a blessing.
There is something very priceless about picking my child up from her school and walking hand in hand with her to our car. We chat a little bit about how her day was, what she did and who she saw. I don't ask too many questions because she doesn't like to answer if I do. I've learned that she likes to go down a pink slide. She didn't like that I gave her a "boring" snack. (?? and here I thought I was being really awesome giving her a smoothie and crackers! lol:) She dressed up and loved it (wow, shocker! haha). She went down the REALLY big slide. She saw her bestie Raelyn (who is in the other 3's class) on the play ground and gave her a hug and it made her really happy. She needed to go potty, asked the teacher and the teacher said no (according to Daisy). I am assuming because they are supposed to hold their potty until potty break. Daisy is not used to someone telling her no when she has to go potty so this was a funny conversation in the car. She painted her feet and made prints on a paper. She said it tickled when the teacher painted her feet and she laughed really loud like this (and then she laughed for me to demonstrate). She told me that she played with a mail box and it was a lot of fun.
Honestly, I was impressed by how many facts she offered me and I always find it interesting what a child is most impacted by and what they choose to divulge.
And in case you are wondering how I spent my first week of "FREEDOM?" Let me just say, that it was not the week that I had hoped for. I imagined coffee dates and long, uninterrupted chats with friends. I imagined a glorious nap on the couch to make up for the last 3 years of not sleeping past 6:30. I imagined a couple hours of window shopping at Marshalls without a single tantrum to navigate. I imagined anything BUT, being sicker than a dying dog for 8 straight days. Seriously, this has been one of the worst colds/sinus infections that I have had in years. Go figure. I was pretty much laid out for 4 days and had a head with a pickaxe in it for 8. Lovely. Some people said (meaning well of course), "at least you have a couple of hours to "rest" without Daisy bugging you. Rest? Did you not read the part about the pickaxe? Sigh. Nonetheless, I managed to pull it together to get Daisy to school and back and kept a smile on my face while doing it. Thank you Jesus:).
Today is the first day that my cold is giving me true relief and boy it feels great! I'm looking forward to a nap next week or maybe coffee with a friend. Stay tuned.
Anyways, in closing, I am SO proud of my little girl for taking on her first week of preschool with courage and joy!
God Bless you my precious daughter, Daisy Love.