The Last First Day of Kindergarten

Back when Madilyn was born I wrote a blog “I Never Have to Do This Again” about my last childbirth but also my last “firsts” with our final baby. Who knew Kindergarten would sneak up even faster with this one? I remember Jake’s first day of kindergarten. I was surprisingly good. I was so ready for him to go to school and continue to be the talkative, social butterfly he was (and honestly get more energy out during the day). I sent him away with a hug and a smile and we were both filled with excitement. Then came Bryce. My shy, little peanut, Brycearoni. I cried on and off for weeks. I felt so out of control. I felt like I was missing so much of his day. It felt like my heart was out of my body when I was at work and I felt sick every morning leaving him. The kicker is … he’s now the one that is the most independent and completely fearless. And now Madilyn. The girl I prayed for and the one who completed our family. It was her turn.

I couldn’t imagine how much of a wreck I would be this time. This year, all three kids were coming to school with me, and Bryce and Madilyn rode to their schools and back to me on the same bus. I accepted I’d be a blubbering mess that morning in front of my students and fellow staff. The morning finally came. She wore her backpack for over an hour in anticipation. We wore our matching heart bracelets for when we missed each other. She was beyond excited. She was ready.

I walked Madilyn to her bus and Bryce grabbed her hand. She never looked back. I felt calm and at peace. What on earth was happening? No tears for any of us?!

I planned to write this post after her first day but couldn’t…because it did NOT go the way I thought it would. And I felt guilty. Am I emotionless at this point? Too busy to feel the moments? So for a week, I’ve been reflecting and watching this 5-year-old navigate her new world with such confidence.

Friday I realized what happened. She was ready and it was because my husband, her daycare providers, and I made sure she would be set up for success. She is kind and confident. She is smart and loves to learn. She makes friends and we are continually reinforcing right from wrong. She’s going to be great. She already is great.

(I do have to say, my husband on the other hand was a nervous wreck and stalked the teacher’s app all day for updates. Daddy’s princess for sure!)

For some reason, I think I had a harder time with Jake going to 7th grade this year. Parenting and the emotions that go with it are weird.

So whether you cried or threw a party when the bus pulled away, know your child is going to be great because they have you and you prepared them. But, the last “firsts” always remain so bittersweet.

Prayers for a great school year!

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