Where has the time gone?
In a matter of days, my daughter will be starting kindergarten – a.k.a. the beginning of her (hopefully) bountiful scholastic life.
This is huge. I normally read into most things too much so you can imagine how much I’m reading into this moment in her life.
There’s been a lot of articles surfacing on social media around how mothers are dealing with their children beginning kindergarten and how they are emotionally connecting to this stepping stone. Not a lot of write-ups around fathers embarking on this life step with their child.
Well let me tell you – at least this Dad right here is.
As of Tuesday, my baby turns around another corner in her life and becomes a little more independent. Tuesday marks the beginning of how her mind will be molded regarding learning new subjects, interacting with new situations and people, and gaining a larger sense of herself. See, I told you I read into things!
She’s growing up. I’m watching my kid grow up in new ways.
This is a list of things that are floating through my mind:
1) Will she be a nice person to others, and respect differences?
2) Will she be teased by others for all of the things that I hold so dear about her or heralded for them?
3) Will she develop a tough skin to stay true to herself?
4) Will she like school in general?
5) Will she keep the old friends that she’s made that are coming to the same school, or will they fall out of friendship?
6) What new parts of herself will she discover?
7) What new interests will she develop?
8) Will she cave to peer pressure or rise above it?
Now I know a lot of these questions go beyond what kindergarten will be, and I know that I can’t protect her from the world and that she has to live her truth. But it’s with this first step into this portal, this first step into the beginning of her elementary school life that really begins her big journey into who she is.
I still remember the first time we dropped her off at daycare when she was a 1 year old – that first day when I carried her in my arms, and handed her to the caregiver. I remember how she reached out to me, wanting to come back to me but I blew her a kiss and waved goodbye. I remember how I wept walking back to the car and driving to work. That was the first step in letting her go just a little bit, I thought to myself.
And of course that first day turned into a second day and so on, and it all got better….
Where did the time go?
Am I scared? A little, but I’ll get over it. Will I be a wreck next week? That’s not entirely clear.
I’d like to think that I won’t but you never know with matters of the heart, I guess.
So, as we creep on closer to Tuesday I take comfort in the many positive stories I’ve heard or read from parents who have been down this path and then some. This experience, while I may be making it bigger than it is, is not an isolated one but one travelled by many.
I know that a part of me is going to miss the years of her “baby life”. But, I hope she knows that I’ll be holding her hand just as tight as she will on that first day and the other days that follow…