We often refer to the end of summer as “back to school” but what if you are not returning? This August, my four year old, will be going to Early Transitional Kindergarten. And I being a realistic and dignified parent, will excuse myself to have a complete meltdown.
I anticipate tears, worries and anxiety.
Recently, I’ve found myself quickly trying to cover more school subjects this last month. Cramming ABC’s and 123’s every chance I’m not working. Not to mention, trying to teach Ace to wipe his own bum. I shopped for easy pull-up pants and non-threatening shoes (without laces). I guess Ace will be going to school in sweats and Velcro pay-less shoes. Every. Single. Day. I even upgraded his room again to help him get the feel of big-boy-ness by placing shoes and clothes at arms reach. But this only failed when I found both my kids playing dress-up AKA mess-up in his closet. In between all this erratic decisions I kept asking myself… Have I done enough? How did I get here? Why does it feel like just yesterday he was my little Poot-Poot in diapers.
We (my husband and I) decided that as a mixed-Latin family, we would enroll Ace into a dual lingual program focusing mostly on learning Spanish for the first years. We speak Spanglish here at home but let me clarify: My husband is an excellent Spanish speaker since this is his first language. And he has blossomed in his career path since day one. We both feel that this not only benefits him (my son Ace) in his job future but also solidifies the importance of his heritage.
There are only a few select schools that teach this method in the local area. Luckily, we found one that we both Love and we just barely made it into the program. We only hope that Ace shares the same excitement that we do even as the youngest in his entire class.
So, Have I done enough?
The answer is YES! Simply writing this brings tears to my eyes. Knowing that we have invested our whole lives since bringing him home from the hospital is enough. We, as parents, make the greatest of sacrifices. We are the reason that we stand on this threshold. How did we get here? We got here by us. And maybe a small prayer here and there. But the parents or guardians who went through every doctor visit, diaper change and every sleepless night. It was us. Why does it feel like it was just yesterday? That’s just a question we all have to face. Time passes only to show us of its importance. But there is a silver lining to my family cloud. That one-on-one time I spent with Ace before I had my daughter will be passed down to her. So really, we should be celebrating this graduation of sorts. It is only the first step of many more to come.
That’s one small step for child, one giant leap for parentkind.
Are you or anyone you know going back to school? Is is exciting or scarey? Or maybe a little of both (if you ask me!)