Mackenzie started Kindergarten yesterday! She has been soooooo excited all summer long. Telling anyone who will listen that she is going into Kindergarten and will be attending the same "big girl" school as her older sister!
Then, yesterday morning, she was scared and acting not at all like herself. She told me at breakfast that she might want to wait another week to start Kindergarten. "But you have to start with all of the other kids, honey." I told her. "Oh..." she gulped and then the tears started. She is afraid of the teacher, she might get lost, no one will like her...and some more that I couldn't understand because by now she is sobbing into my shoulder.
All of the sisters plus Mommy gave her a group hug. We have this special way we all stand and hold each others hands while linking arms, this is how we pray at night and sing a song. So we did this and prayed for a good day for Mackenzie and then all hugged again and then it was time to wash off the tears and take that First Day of School picture on the front porch with our new backpacks. And then off to drop off the little ones first so I could walk Mackenzie into her room and take pictures at her desk. (Pictures will follow. I still have a regular 35mm, no digital...I know, I am really old fashioned, but it takes phenomenal pictures and I don't trust those digital ones!)
She sat down next to a cute little girl named Dayna, and they posed for me and then for Dayna's Mother. Katy stood next to me and asked me if I would walk her to her class also. So we kind of stood around with the other parents and then waved to Mackenzie and walked out. Mackenzie was fine by then and waved us off as if she didn't know why we were all standing around staring at her. (That is the Mackenzie I know and love!!)
Out in the hallway were lots of parents trying to get one last glimpse of their new little Kindergartner. In fact there were quite a lot of crying mothers. I kind of snickered to Katy about it. Oh, I know it is hard to see your children grow up and away from you...but give me a break. You won't see me crying at the school while other Mothers watch! (These words will come back to haunt me...keep reading!) I even joked with one of my neighbors who was crying a lot! "Oh, you'll get used to it. Go shopping, do stuff you can't do when the kids are not around...soon you'll be glad to have them all in school!" As am I...right?!
So at 3:30pm I drove back up to the school and walked up to the front area where the kids come out. I knew Katy would know where to meet me, but I wasn't sure how the Kindergartners came out, or where, or even when. Then I saw the line of Kindergarten teachers with their students following behind them. They come out from the side of the building and walk around to the front, following in single file. The teachers are all smiles and happy to be leading their little charges out to their waiting parents.
But the kids...well, most of them looked like they were suffering from shell shock. I couldn't see Mackenzie at first, but when I finally found her, she looked so small and so young standing there with all of the others. She kept looking for me and didn't recognize me at first, then when she saw me her face lit up and at the same time dropped! I gulped, oh no...you are not going to cry...Don't Cry!...I commanded myself. Then Mackenzie started to cry and then I started to cry. I blinked my eyes a hundred times to stop the tears, a small amount of water got out...but no one seemed to notice, Thank God! I picked Mackenzie up and Katy grabbed her hand and kept asking, "Did you have a great day? I saw you at recess, did you see me wave? Is your teacher nice?"
We walked over to the car, waving at friends and past teachers but did not stop to talk to anyone, I was on a mission....to get into my car before the tears really started to spill. It didn't help that Mackenzie was still holding onto me for dear life! Maybe she thought I might tell her to go back into the school again, today. Maybe she was just tired and overwhelmed, I'm still not sure what she was crying about. But I knew I was having a hard time keeping it together.
As we drove home Katy seemed to notice I was sniffling, she asked me if I was crying, I said it's just my allergies...and she bought that, yes! After we arrived home, the girls got their folders out of their backpacks to give to me. I sat down to read them and Mackenzie pulled out a poem from her teacher, it was all about how she would take care of our children while they were with her, love them as her own, send them back to us safe and sound, etc. And then Mackenzie handed me a drawing of herself that she had done at school, "So you can look at me if you miss me while I am at school." She said brightly! And the tears poured from my eyes....I grabbed her up and hugged her and let myself cry in her hair. The girls looked a little worried at first, so I told them they were happy tears and they both hugged me.
Sorry I laughed at you Amy. I guess I am just as much of a crying Mommie as you were. I bet we all are...it just takes different things to turn the waterworks on!