The Journey: First day of school

Tripping over my words on the way to school I was forming the best pep talk I knew how., not knowing if I was comforting you or me. I was telling you "how it will be fun once you get use to it..not to worry there will be a bunch of little ones there like yourself, plenty of kids to play with. You get to take naps and there will be a playground to run around on, it will be fun…" with the best false joy you could muster, not comfortable with the fact you wont be with them every waking moment anymore. 

Their time has come to assume independence for the first time in their fledgling lives. Who is more worried about the new path? The little sitting oh too quietly in the back or you? Stealing a glance into the rear view mirror as you pull up to the school you notice the lil one isn't the only one swallowing hard. Stepping from the vehicle they cling to your leg with the "scared of the dog" grip. Holding the little one in your arms you step forward confidently hiding every ounce of fear and anxiety while the two of you try not to tear up. 

Child in arm and hand on the door knob you pause for a brief moment before entering, thinking to yourself you have the wildest thoughts.."we really don't need daycare do we? I'll just stay home so they will be with me…" interrupting your thoughts the little one squirms in your arms to get a look inside. With the enjoyment of beholding a muddle puddle for the first time their eyes fill with curiosity usually reserved for whats under the sink. Turning the door knob you both enter a new chapter in your young relationship. Watching all the kids running about it hits you, you two are not the only pair to cross that bridge this morning, seems that the first day anxiety is shared by many. You are not an island upon yourself with these emotions, you are but a parent crossing the threshold for the first time. 

Sharing a glance of surprise mixed with relief you let your little one slither down to the floor both standing there taking it in. Your trance is dashed by another little one coming to urge your child on to come play, sent to you like a lil conductor on an invisible train. The child beckons your own to follow. For an instant you feel better knowing they will be "just fine". Greetings with the teacher exchanged and with a last minute hug and kiss your child runs off to join their brand new society, to relate, laugh, cry and play with people their own age. Feeling the last warmth of little hands on your fingertips you both turn from each other heading into a place never visited. 

Stepping outside you don't remember walking to the car or getting in. As you sit with the air blowing into your face you realize that it hurts letting go. All the power in the world that a parent has they are powerless to stop one thing, growing up. 

Even though this article is laced with sad undertones take solace in the fact that growing up is progress and we want the best for our children, not to mention how sweet a break is from time to time.
I wrote this piece after Mika and I took Ayden to Kiddie Kollege on his very first day of school in Spring 2009. Even though he is nine years old and starting fourth grade… I still remember that day as if it were yesterday.

Mr. Beggs

Happy 1st day of school HC students. 

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~Mika Beggs

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