Wednesday, June 22, 2005

Another Stage Of Life Passes...

...and I'm not sure how I feel about it. Today N. graduated from Kindergarten. I know she didn't, technically, but until someone comes up with a better term, well...'matriculated' is too fancy for 5 year olds. I've been helping out all year by being there every morning to help the Kindergarteners line up for class, after which we all walk waaaaay out to the back field with the rest of the school kids, then on to class when the bell rings. Myself and 3 other moms have been doing this every day all year, rain or shine, sick or well, being there as a comfort and a familiar face for the kids. I'm glad school is over since my leg pain has been viciously growing in leaps and bounds for the last few months and towards the end it seemed a race between the end of the year and the hospital (school won, the hospital thing is in a week and a half), but at the same time I'm sad. The difference in the kids from tiny, clinging little things who barely knew their own names last September to self-confident school kids who can read, write, do addition and subtraction, charge around the school like they own it and follow rules today is nothing short of amazing. I've had a lump in my throat the size of Kansas all day. Today was tougher than N.'s first day of Kinder, although that first day I DID pace the living room, watching the clock and counting the minutes until I could go and get her.

Today the contents of N.'s back pack were: The last few school assignments graded and returned, a pink, yellow and green construction paper flower and white paper dove she made, her final report card (overall pretty good, she needs improvement in penmanship and paying attention, but is two years above the norm in reading ability, no surprises there), three invitations to summertime birthday parties, her Kinder graduation certificate, her little softcover yearbook with many scrawling signatures and a Fourth of July headband they made today.

It was nice that everyone made a point today of lingering to look each other in the eye, smile and say goodbye and have a nice summer. I tried to explain to N. yesterday and today that today was the last day of school, and she wouldn't be seeing many of her friends for a few months, but I'm sure I'll be hearing "Can I go to school?" quite a bit in the next few days. I'm glad she loves school so much. I loved elementary school, too. I can still vividly remember my own days in Kindergarten, and how excited I was to finally be old enough to go after watching my brother and sister leave for school each morning.

But now I know how my Mom must have felt.

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