The little started pre-school last week.
I have very VISCERAL memories of preschool: painted macaroni glued to paper, sensory corn tables, songs and laughter and story time, bright colors and simple, but engaging toys. There are of course more TERRIBLE memories like the time I broke my leg on the playground or that time I puked on the merry-go-round.
My favorite parts of our new routine are how the little greets me like he hasn’t seen me in years and how he’s already social, interacting with his peers, wanting to communicate very important ideas like “I”m going home now” (ie: “HOME!!!” over and over and over again). He’s discovering new foods and a newfound independence.
I look around the room and see children being children, a room decorated with care and all the childhood playthings we set on the shelf as we age. I chalk my tears up not to the fact that my little boy is growing up, but to the fact that I REMEMBER these things on an entirely different level than what has transpired over the past 30 years of my life. I wonder how those memories got there and more than anything I wonder why they stay there – so clearly tied up in what I hope for, for MY future as well as his.
In that moment I recognize that not only is he loved, but I was loved too – by caregivers and family and also by some source I cannot even begin to describe. Young children, exploring their world, handprint art, dolls and play kitchens and muddy rainboots and picture books…these all feel like love to me.
I’m so excited for him. My friends keep me grounded in reality and laughing about the whole thing, but I really can’t imagine a better way for him to spend half his day.