Since I joined Facebook in 2007 I’ve seen various family members, friends and colleagues do the same thing each September. They’ve all posted photographs of their children, often wearing super cute over-sized uniform about to begin their first ever day at big school!
Each September I’ve also read poems, letters and memes all dedicated to the Mummy ‘losing’ their now grown up babies to the education system, the words providing comfort to those who are emotional and empowerment to those who are super proud of their offspring.
But each September I’ve always had the same thought. Is it really that big a deal? Your child is starting school. The likelihood is that they’ve been to nursery, they have socialised, played and are therefore probably emotionally mature enough to deal with a 9-3pm day in a classroom.
Perhaps it was ignorance, but I just didn’t understand the need for such a song and dance about it. I didn’t ‘get’ the need for tears, it’s part of a child’s path (usually) after all and because I’m a huge supporter of education, I actually found myself looking forward to the school years my children would have!
Yesterday that all changed. I called Gabriel’s school to speak to his new teacher from September and to arrange a look around the classroom and communal areas of the school. She informed me that the next day Gabriel had an inset day, so he needed to be at the school for 9am and that I’d be leaving him there to become familiar with his surroundings. I won’t lie, I was a little apprehensive- would Gabriel cope well with this transition? I hadn’t prepared for any attendance until September and neither had he.
I raised the prospect as we ate last night. Gabriel seemed pretty keen and I was relieved. So this morning we ate a hearty breakfast and then chose his outfit together. Then I took him to big school for the first time.
Of course, an obligatory photograph was taken..
I had become one of those Parents.
But, I do not care.
I am super proud of Gabriel and all that he takes on board. He always wears that gorgeous smile across his face- he’s such a happy child. He makes me cry with laughter most days, and I just know that he will flourish at school and get along well with his new friends.
After we dropped Gabriel off at school, Willow and I climbed back into the car. As I indicated out of the parking space to head into town Willow said,
‘Mummy, there’s something missing’
I turned to face her and she pointed to Gabriel’s empty booster seat.
She was right. There was something missing!
My baby boy, my first born is at big school and it’s so bittersweet! From now on, days when I am not at work it will just be me and her for most of the day. A new chapter in our lives is about to begin and with it comes restriction as well as freedom, development and fun!
However, no memes, poems or letters required. But I may have had a little cry…
Good luck little man! May your school years be awesome!