Tuesday, September 4, 2007

Off to School

Not only watching school begin and the buses roll with eager faces but reading a lot of knitting blogs, well, it has all made me think of those days of getting kids off to school. I couldn't help leaving the following message on A Bluestocking Knits blog: "I've been tearing up a lot the past couple of weeks. As I walk home from the park I pass groups of little ones going off to school, their new clothes and freshly brushed hair, their brand spankin' new backpacks and their expectant faces. That look is counterbalanced by their Mothers' sorrowful expression, almost panic in some cases. It takes me back it does, all the way back to when my children went off to school, but most especially when the baby left. She is 22 now but I still get misty when I think of her early days at school. "

May I go a bit further down memory lane? When kitty girl (for I still think of her as that) had her first day of school we were living in Minnesota, outside of Minneapolis. Her dad was a reservist who had been activated for a tour during Desert Storm so I faced the first day of school alone. My daughter and I had been talking about school for the summer and she was looking forward to it. New clothes had been purchased, lunches decided on, hair cut and new shoes at the ready. Her backpack was carefully chosen from the rack of many and she was good to go. The first day of school dawned bright and we took off for the bus stop, three houses down. Kitty Girl was being filmed by my friend with a video camera and she was chattering excitedly. When the yellow bus drove up and stopped for us, KG began a bit of a fit. That quickly escalated into screaming and abject terror. The bus driver, bless her heart, had experience with First Day of School Trauma, and helped get my child on the bus and off it rolled. One of the last things heard on that video to this day is the sound of my sob. I walked the short distance home and barely made it inside the door! I sunk to the gold and brown ugly tile in the foyer and laying my face against its' coolness I cried for what seemed like hours. When the recalcitrant child came home at the end of the day and I met the bus she was all smiles and giggles and I was more relieved than I can say.

Yes, school starts every year and as time passes I find myself getting more and more nostalgic for The Day. I'll walk each morning and smile at the kids who are waiting for their bus to school, and have a bigger smile for their Mom's who will soon discover that after the sadness of packing a child off to school fades will come the realization that time is a new and precious gift.

photo from http://www.thephilosophyofchange.com/art/first-day-of-school.php which is actually a pretty cool pageview.

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