Twas the night before Kindergarten, and all through the house, everyone was so nervous and excited (or nervicited as Pinky Pie would say) they couldn’t sleep.
Hair was washed and braided so it would be easy to brush in the morning.
The outfit was selected and laid out.
Extra stories before bed.
Lots of talking about what school would be like.
Toes tickled, forehead kissed, little girl all tucked in…
but she just couldn’t sleep. “I’m starting to think morning isn’t ever going to come,” she said after getting up the fourth time to see if it was time to get ready for school yet.
I was in a slightly different state of mind. My plans to print out the cutest little sign for her first day of Kindergarten photo were foiled when my printer quit on me. So I spent those hours between tucking her in and tucking her in again using her back-to-school markers to make a sign for her by hand.
Our little family of three walked to school together that first morning. Another family joined us with their new kindergartener. With each new turn and cross street more people joined our walking caravan to the school. As we approached the last corner before the school, we saw families flooding together from all directions, and we could hear the chatter of what must be thousands of voices. I was not prepared for the roar of sound when we walked on to the blacktop and over to the designated line-up spot for her class. So many children. So many parents. Especially for the kindergarteners, in many cases there were two parents for each child.
The bell rang.
The kids lined up, and followed their teachers into the classroom.
The parents stood there and stared at the building. Especially the kindergarten parents. How long was it ok to stand here and stare at the building like a crazy person before it gets creepy?
The principal came out and invited parents in to the cafeteria for coffee and a hard-sell on volunteering, before we all wondered off in different directions, a little overwhelmed at this new feature of our lives.
At the end of the first day of school, she was predictably exhausted
The end of the second day was as well.
But every morning, she bounces back, ready to take on another day of school.
This is part of our routine now: the walk to school, wondering which families our timing will sync up with for the next 4 blocks, parents starting to recognize each other – and each other’s kids, kids recognizing each other and excitedly getting caught up on everything that happened since 3:40 yesterday, friendships forming – for the adults and the kids.
It’s a beautiful life