Wednesday, September 08, 2010

Where Did The BABY Go?

It's a little bit surreal taking your first born to her first day of preschool. Where she will be away for six hours, learning and growing with people and children who are (not yet, at least) friends or family. Watching her walk to her classroom and then through the gate and then the door, it was like I was literally watching her grow up before my eyes. For an instant, I flashed forward to the first day of kindergarten, high school graduation, college graduation, wedding day, the day she tells me I'll be a grandmother (EEK!). And the next thing I knew, she was telling me she'd see me later and that she loved me. "Bye bye, Mommy."

When we walked into the preschool director's office, my eyes welled up.

Zoe is not a baby anymore! She's not even a toddler. How did that happen so fast?

We've been promising Zoe preschool since we started potty training her. She's never been intimidated by the idea of leaving us and going to school. She was so determined, that potty training ended up taking much less time than we thought it would. Turns out, we weren't quite ready to follow through with our promise right away (neither financially or emotionally) and so we let some time pass.

She asked to go to school if not every day, then at least every other day. We kept telling her "Soon. Soon you'll go!" and every time she would do what I've begun to call the Flashdance dance and squeal with excitement. "I can't wait to go to preschool!"

A new preschool just opened up less than five minutes from our house, and I took it as a sign that it was finally time (because, you know, her asking every other day wasn't enough of a SIGN) and we went to check it out. Last Friday I picked up the registration paperwork. Last weekend we found her a special "Big Girl Starting School" outfit. She picked out a backpack and a lunchbox. Yesterday was her first day.

It felt like I would never fall asleep Monday night. I had 1st day of school jitters. I dragged myself out of bed at 6am. I was nauseated just thinking about her going to school even if I did know she was going to love it, it was going to be great for her, yada yada yada. I might have teared up a little, but I pushed it aside so Daniel and I could make her lunch together. I included a little note.

Lunch

And then we woke her up, got her dressed and brought her out to eat her breakfast. She was all giggles and squirms and exclamations.

Someone is a little bit excited to start preschool!

We took two cars. I drove the kids in the van and Daniel took the truck so he could leave straight from there for work. We loaded Finn in his stroller and snapped a few pictures.

Ready and excited

Me and my big girl

Finn definitely knew something big was happening and he was excited for his big sister.

Finn's excited too

I snapped a bunch of pictures of her walking.

My creation: WALKING

Of Daniel opening the gate.

Education: HERE

And of her in her classroom

She got right in there.

Finn was upset at first that we were leaving her behind, but he got over that soon enough and enjoyed his day. I think he loved the one on one attention he got with Cheryl and then me. Yesterday alone, he said 3 new sentences clearly and his vocabulary has grown just in the last 24 hours (Amazing, I tell you!)

When I went to pick up Zoe at 1, she did not notice me for almost 5 minutes because she was so engaged. When she did see me, she jumped up and gave me a hug and refused to leave. She was proud to show me her art she'd made, she couldn't wait to come back Thursday. She was quick to tell me someone had pushed her in the tummy and she had to tell them "Please don't push my tummy. That makes me sad." and that her favorite part was "the babies". I drove her over to Cheryl's to trade kids and I'm told she slept the entire 3 hours she was there - and then she was in bed at eight.

I think preschool is going to be good for all of us. I'm so proud of my girl.

POSE!

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