Your first day of school is tomorrow. You are three years old and you're going into the PK3 class at my school, Southern Oak Elem. I can't believe this time has come, you'll already be four in October. You're too smart for your own good and I hope you're readier than I feel right now. You show up at 8:15 and I pick you up at 2:45 after I drop my students off at their bus.
I've dreamed of this day since I decided to become a teacher. This, right here, is why I decided to teach. I loved having my mom at school and holidays at home, so I knew I'd want that for my family. Thankfully I also love kids and think I do quite well at the profession I selfishly chose for my "family one day". I was always attached to my mom, nervous about school and being away, always homesick and hanging on my mom. I think you're different than I am, I'm hoping anyway.
I've cried many tears, worrying about you being in school. I can't stand the thought of you being sad, scared, tired, hungry, confused, you name it, I want to be there. We have cameras and I ALWAYS check in, I text your sitters even when I know what's going on just to make sure you're doing well. I'm losing control and I'm not fond of it. You're a big girl, a smart girl, and I know you will thrive. You're ready, more ready than I. You do tell me you're going to be sad to be away from us, you are reluctant to share your feelings, you'll always tell me but you don't want to dive into it, you always change the subject. You said you thought you'd be sad, after we got home from meet and greet today. I reminded you how excited you were, how much you loved your class and your teacher. You said I'm going to be sad because I'll miss...and then you pointed at daddy, bubby and me. My heart sinks in these moments. I don't know for sure what will happen tomorrow morning, but I believe you'll come around if it's not right away. I think you like to remain strong and confident, even if you have to fake it until you make it. I love your strength. You've never cried, maybe once or twice when daddy dropped you back in the day. You've always been able to flex with the change and deal with the umpteen sitters that you've gone through. I know you're bored at home, you enjoy Abbey's company but when she tends to Everett, you don't dive into your toys like you used to, you wander aimlessly. You need the socialization, I just hope everyone is as nice and kind as I know they'll be to you.
You wait your turn. You ask permission with manners. You're patient and share. I want you to have that in return, but in all honesty, that's not what kids do. Kids push and shove and budge, I'm not ready for you to see that, experience that, or become that. I hope your heart stays true to your friendly, patient ways. You've never snatched a toy from someone, you try and sneak them from your Bubby but 95% of the time you ask him with manners and even find him a great trade. You're innocent, pure and sweet, I want to keep you in this bubble forever. I don't want you to see the disrespect, bullying and harsh ways of kids in the world. But I must. :(
I'm so proud of you and all you do and all you know. Your teacher met you again today, but got to play with you for a bit and she was blown away. You counted 15 cots by eyeballing them, quite quickly, you can see and write your name, you can name all the planets in order and give countless details about each, you know all fifty states in order, think deep about books when we read and draw conclusions about the characters that many of my third graders struggled with, you're observant and quick, you can almost count to 100, you add and subtract, the list goes on. I wonder if this will be enough. I think adjusting to school will be enough and socializing will be enough, for a while, but I wonder if you'll notice that you're not just a kid in that class, that you're THE kid in that class, the kid that has so much to offer this world and a really big smart brain.
I can't imagine walking away tomorrow morning. I've never been so unprepared for my school year because I'm so engulfed in yours. I hope we both take the bull by the horns and tackle this school year together. I hope you come into your own and learn and play and grow in ways that impact you positively. I hope you smile when I walk away, and I promise to smile back and save my tears for the moment I look away.
You stole my heart when I first laid eyes on you, and my heart will always be with you, even when I'm not right there.
I love you with all I have, my entire heart and soul,
This is the necklace mommy wanted to get you. It has a picture of daddy and mommy on one side and Bubs and nunu on the other side. You're like mommy and don't really like things touching your neck, but I think you'll love the thought, even if you don't want to wear it.
Here is your outfit, board and necklace all ready to go. Your lunch is packed, your bag has your folder with forms all filled out, we are physically ready. Hopefully by tomorrow we can be mentally ready.