We walked to the school and as we approached it I started feeling a lump in my throat, this was it, this was the moment I would have to leave my beautiful girl in a new classroom with a new teacher and then leave my baby boy alone for the first time in my life.
This summer they broke down the old school building and built a new one, the teachers and staff ONLY moved into this school this weekend and up until friday they were still accepting registration. No problem right??? WRONG! What happened is that a week or two ago we got letters in the mail stating the name of the kids teachers and the room number, but when we arrived at school this morning we were told that everything had been changed. After checking in with the teacher on Jasmine's letter, she kindly informed us that she didn't have her anymore, check next door. Luckily enough, that was the right teacher and I got Jasmine quickly situated before setting off in search of the Kindergarten teacher.
We walked the confusing new hallways, looking this way and that way and finally saw the kindergarten hallway, it would be the one littered with little ones tightly grasping their parents hands, digital cameras and camcorders shot off flashes and bright lights following the little ones every step and in every room you looked into, there were tears and little bodies clutching tightly on to their mom or dad. It was heartbreaking, I'm a softie, I cry easily for goodness sake, so walking through this all enfolding before us was just awful.
We made it to the teacher on the letter and she again kindly informed me that it had been changed, Nicholas wasn't on her list, check with the other teachers. We walked from classroom to classroom and teacher to teacher, it almost felt like I was a door to door salesman trying to sell my child, finally the LAST one, teacher #5 was it. We were ushered in, hung up his backpack, got him his name tag and dumped all his supplies in the bins provided.
He made his way to the first table he could find with the boys, sat down and proceeded to draw like nothing happened. I hung around for a bit, and I realize now that it wasn't for HIS sake because, well, because he was just dandy, it was for my sake. I am pathetic I admit it LOL
After 15 minutes, the parents started to leave and I figured I may as well take the cue and head out as well, no matter how much I wanted to stay there forever, I doubt I could pass as a 5 year old, I mean, if my height didn't give it away, I'm sure the wedding ring and the sunglasses perched on top of my head would.
I reached down gave him a big hug and a kiss on the lips, like I always do, but this time he quickly grabbed a hold of his shirt and wiped, God forbid one of the other boys sees him kiss his mother. I laughed it off though inside I wanted to cry, not only did I have to leave my baby but I couldn't even kiss him anymore, how sad LOL
I said goodbye, told him I loved him and went over the rules again, you know the "listen to the teacher", "If you need to go potty, you have to ask to go ok?", "don't be sad, remember mommy will be back soon" and all that other stuff we tell them just to make ourselves feel better LOL
He gave me a hug and said he loved me and then went back to drawing, I walked to the door, camera in hand and turned back expecting to see him looking back at me with sadness in his eyes or actually crying like some of the other kids, but what I saw left me perplexed and wondering why I was making such a big deal out of nothing.
Now tell me does that look like he's falling apart at the seams because mommy is leaving him? Does it look like he is struggling to see through the tears in his eyes??? LOL
He was already up and playing without a second glance at me. Oh well....I snapped the pic, turned the camera off and walked out, got lost in the new school for 5 minutes (again, I felt pathetic LOL) and then walked home, wiping the tears from my eyes and staring at my shadow remembering that just last year there was two of us, mine and a little boy's on my side. Now there's just one and it's a sad feeling but also very freeing.
So I came home and walked around the house, cried a little more and then told myself to snap out of it, he was fine, he was having fun and besides, I had the house to myself, alone, all alone for the first time in 9 years. Want to know what I did? I turned on the radio loud and danced in the living room, yes I did, I shook my booty, I felt like an idiot (I am starting to see a pattern LOL) but I danced and then I cleaned the house while listening to music...I ate lunch alone in the quiet, just me and the Lord and just when I thought I would start crying again and feeling sad, He whispered in my ear:
"Do not fret my child, remember that you've done an amazing job with those little children and you've devoted your life to them, and now they're off starting a whole new chapter and so are you. Don't cry for the loneliness, rejoice at the chance to put yourself first for a few hours"
I smiled and I thanked Him and then I finished the housework and sat down to make a list of projects I want to get done to keep me busy. By the time I went to pick the kids up at school I totally felt like a new woman, like my soul had been recharged and as I took each one into my arms and hugged them tight, I knew that no matter how hard the separation was, it was the right thing to do.