It is the fourth day of kindergarten, and my mental dust has finally settled on the logistics of the whole drop-off, pick-up thing. I've now turned my attention towards the aspect of Jack starting school that's a little more global. It is so disconcerting not to see him all day long for five days a week. I am enjoying my me time, don't get me wrong. I love having several hours a couple days a week when both kids are in school and I can be on my own. It's something I've missed lately. But for seven hours a day, I don't know at all what Jack is doing. Intellectually I know this is not bad. This is the natural first step towards Jack growing up. Kids get a little bit of independence at a time, until one day, they are truly ready to leave the nest. This is a good thing. This is the whole end goal of parenting - raising children to be independent responsible adults. That's what I believe in my rational thinking mind, but my heart is crying out, "nooooo! I don't want him to leave me!"
I am happy when I see how comfortable Jack already is in elementary school. Today I walked him in through the parent pick-up door, instead of the front door so he could see where I'd pick him up in the car (for the first time) today. He walked in that building ahead of me, confidently lead me on a detour past his classroom so he could show me some art they had in the hallway, and then strolled right into the cafeteria as if he owned the place. That kid knows what he's doing, and he's come a long way from the toddler who hid behind my legs every time he encountered an unfamiliar, or sometimes even familiar, person. I am happy, and I am relieved, because I truly did not know how well he would take this transition to kindergarten. I am sad, though, because my first little boy is leaving me - not now, not next year, but this is the first step in the process. One day, he will pack up his car and head away from our house for his own adventures in the world, and even though he's only five now, I can see that day coming way sooner than I'd like.
This is what I was thinking about a lot of the day yesterday. Then Jack came home from school, and he was elated to find out I'm volunteering in his classroom once a week. He also asked me to come eat lunch with him some day at school. This morning, he sat in my lap and told me he was sad we couldn't have Jack and Momma day anymore because of school. I reassured him we would find Jack and Momma time somewhere in our busy week, no question. So, he's on his way to growing up, right on schedule, and some day he will be gone, but he's not quite done with Momma yet, and I am so very glad.