Kaleb’s excitement over starting big kid’s school eventually gave way to fear and apprehension.
The night before school started Kaleb was uncontrollable and practically inconsolable. He was overcome with the fear of change, doing things differently, trying something new!
And “acted out” those fears with some bizarre toddler behavior!
And so we had to have a long talk that night before he went to sleep.
He didn’t want to leave his teacher, Ms. Chrissy. He’s one of those children that gets quite attached to his teacher.
I had to reassure him during our talk that he would see Chrissy almost everyday when he returned to the daycare center. (The teacher in his new class at daycare said he, unfortunately, didn’t get to see Chrissy when he returned to daycare after the first day of school and he had a “meltdown.”)
But the one thing that I said in my pep talk about going to big kid’s school that helped him hold it together was that he gets to ride the school bus from school to daycare.
Yes, ride the school bus, the big, yellow school bus!
The assurance of riding the school bus seemed to make going to big kid’s school a new adventure worth trying!
As we got in the car and drove to school the next morning, there seemed to be this tension hanging over us. It was this sense of woebegone–that melancholy you feel at the loss of something that will never be recovered.
Kaleb and Kenzie probably didn’t understand it. But I knew what it was.
I knew it was coming just as I had mentioned in Part 1 of this post.
The first breaking up of Kaleb and Kenzie.
They had done everything together. Until now their lives ran completely parallel to one another.
Where one went, so went the other. What one did, so did the other.
And now, for the first time in either of their lives, they weren’t going to the same place, doing the same thing.
Kaleb’s life was taking a turn in a different direction from Kenzie’s.
Sure, it’s just a part of growing up, getting older, growing more independent…and more independent from one another.
But it still doesn’t alleviate that sense of loss when they reach these little milestones in their growth and development from toddlers to grown-ups.
While my life is about growing old, their lives are about growing up. And so they are almost always confronting a crossroads in life, a part of their little toddler lives that gets left behind never to be reclaimed or relived or even remembered (except, possibly, by me).
Yet, while that part of life that gets left behind becomes a fading memory, it also becomes a building block for the next phase of life, the next stage of development.
So when it was all said and done, things went as planned and without any major problems for the first day of school. There were no outbursts of emotion from either Kaleb or Kenzie during the process.
And the only drama of the day came from me as I tried to secure a parking spot in a school parking lot that was overcrowded because of all the parents doing the same thing as I was–accompanying their little “preshies” into their new classrooms on the first day of school.
After the first day of school was over, he liked it and he wasn’t “scared” to go back to his new school.
And, at the end of the day as we debriefed about the first day of school, the only thing that seemed noteworthy in his recounting of his first day at school was his delight in the bus ride from school to the daycare on the big, yellow school bus!
The bus ride is what made it worth it all…it’s why he wants to go back the next day!