Today, my oldest baby started Kindergarten. What's the big deal? I said. It's like glorified preschool! I said. I'll be way more traumatized when it's first grade and she's gone all day. I said. I swore I wasn't going to do it. I'm not going to cry, I'm not going to cry, I'm not going to cry. I cried.
No one saw. I kept a stiff upper lip as my eyes welled up under my oversized aviators. I have a feeling someone over at Ray Ban designed them for the sole purpose of- hiding the tears of mothers that just let a piece of their heart waltz right into an elementary school.
I didn't cry for her. She is so vivacious, courageous, outgoing, friendly, funny, smart, attentive, bold, compassionate...none of that changes when she isn't in my care for a mere 3 hours. She will be just fine.
As for me? That's a whole 'nother story.
I cried because there are these moments where time freezes and you have a split second to soak in the reality that something big just happened.
My little 7lb. 7oz. baby girl just walked her almost 6 year old self into school. Like real deal- going to learn to read, write, arithmetic, honest-to-goodness school. And all I did was blink.
Some of you are reading this while your baby is off to college. Maybe your baby is getting ready to walk down the aisle. Maybe your baby just learned to drive. Maybe your baby is doing kung fu moves on your bladder. Maybe your baby took their first steps. Maybe your baby just smiled for the first time. Maybe your baby just ate a freaking blueberry, I don't know.
What I DO know is that it doesn't matter what stage of parenthood you're in-the overwhelming feeling of love and pride when your child moves onto a new stage is something that unites all of us, as parents.
There are days when I'm guilty of phoning it in as a mother and I'm not proud of myself for it. I spout off an ol' yeah, yeah, yeah...I see- as my daughter is twirling around or my son is pumping his very own legs on the swing. Their energy is endless and hundreds of times a day they are wanting to show me something new-but let's be honest, these toilets aren't going to scrub themselves.
I need to allow myself more moments to soak it all in because I know this stage is so short lived. There will soon be a day that they will be off showing their friends how "cool" they are, while rolling their eyes at their dear old mom.
Now if you'll excuse me, I need to send a little note to Ray Ban to ask that they never stop making aviators...at all....ever.
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