My grandsons will be in school this year. The oldest will be in first grade. He’s been reading and writing in English and Mandarin for a while for a while so I hope it’s not boring to him. The youngest will be in preschool. He’s been ready to go ever since they told him he was going. The photos I’ve seen show him wearing his backpack all day long, ready to take it to school. I hope he likes it. He’s not as eager for scholarly goals as his brother was, but I’m sure he’ll do fine.
I’ve seen photos on Facebook of children’ going back to school. It brings up a lot of memories of taking my kids to school. Time seems to go faster after your kids get in school. Maybe it’s because the years are numbered and you realize it’s passing faster than you want.
Daughter hated kindergarten, and I left her crying there everyday in the beginning. I felt awful every time I had to do it. Eventually the crying stopped, but she still wasn’t happy. She’d come home and declare, “We still didn’t learn how to read.” She knew what she wanted to do, but the teacher and the other kids were holding her back. They wanted to keep in kindergarten another year because she was immature and didn’t know left from right. I explained that I didn’t know left from right either so they better put her in first grade. She finally learned to read and earned so many Book It coupons for Pizza Hut, our family got tired of eating pizza.
Our son was very stone-faced about attending school. He didn’t cry, but I got the impression he didn’t like it. His teachers said he was immature which I finally figured out meant he wasn’t wild and ill-mannered like a lot of the other kids. When we moved to another town, our first meeting with the teacher went much better. She said he was very mature and stayed on task when requested. That’s when I knew moving to a better school district was the best thing for our kids. Son didn’t talk much in school. The teachers worried about it, but I assured them, he talked a lot at home. Years later, he told me he loved antagonizing teachers by not saying anything until the last day of school. He liked to watch the looks on their faces. Ornery kid!
When our son-my youngest child, my baby-went off to college in another town, I was tearful at work. I didn’t cry but was weepy. One of my co-workers noticed and let me know I was being ridiculous. She slammed her fist on my desk and said, “What to you have to cry about? He’s going to college. He’s got ambition to do something great with his life! If he was sitting on your couch, watching TV or playing games with no ambition to do anything more, THEN you’d have reason to cry!” She was right. I quit my moping and rejoiced that my son was building a life for himself. I needed to learn that lesson, but she didn’t have to hit my desk.
When you see your children growing, learning, and getting bigger, rejoice that you are getting to watch them build their lives. It’s hard to watch them fight battles and struggle with things, but they are learning lessons just like we did when we were their ages. We eventually reach the point where we are no longer parents telling them what to do but are spectators to their lives. They’ll always be our babies, but they will have flown off on their own.