When I was pregnant with Natalie, I got a lot of advice…most of it useless but occasionally there was a nugget of wisdom. “Having children is like having your heart walking around”. It sounded cheesy at the time, but now it makes so much sense. Watching Natalie walk in to Kindergarten on Tuesday felt much like my heart ripping out of my chest and walking in to that school.
There’s no way to prepare yourself for that feeling. You are allowing veritable strangers to take care of something so precious, you have spent essentially every minute of their lives with them. If you don’t have kids, imagine that the car of your dreams is in your garage right now. You worked every day for 5 years straight to get this car. Now, drive that car to a garage you’ve only been to once before, park in a random spot, leave the keys in the car and walk away. Maybe they give you a ticket, maybe they don’t, but they “assure” you that your car will be fine. See you in 7 hours. It’s hard for me to let go of anything and there was honestly a split second where I felt like snatching her and running home. I’ve never been one for homeschooling, I like the social aspect of regular school and I also believe that most teachers are under appreciated. I’m pretty sure I’d be a terrible teacher too, I have zero patience. That said, I’d be super happy knowing that they were in my care, with me, until they go off to college. Or maybe I can homeschool college too? Of course I didn’t snatch her and run, but I wanted to. I sat in my car and cried, cried for the little girl she is, the baby she was and the amazing woman she’s growing up to be.
Incidentally, she loved it. Every second. Recess, learning, teachers, new friends…her world is getting bigger and mine seemed just a little bit smaller.