We’ve been prepping for weeks and the day is finally here. Gia — my oldest, the one who made me a mommy — started kindergarten today.
We visited her classroom last week (pics here) and we prepped outfits and backpacks last night. We went to bed at a reasonable hour (her, not me) and we were READY!
This morning Gia woke up earlier than usual and I could tell she was too excited to sleep. So she and I headed downstairs to watch tv and have some morning snuggles. It was a perfect way to start the day. Thankfully, the rest of the morning routine was smooth as could be. “Gia, it’s time to have breakfast” was met with “Ok Mom!” instead of the usual “But I’m playing on the iPad”.
We took a few (ok, a million) pictures outside and Gia was a star. She didn’t seem nervous at all. The bus stop is right across from our house so as soon as we saw the other kids walking down the street, our whole family headed outside too and made some new bus friends.
And then we heard the unmistakable rumble from down the block. Seconds later the bus pulled up. I gave Gia one last squeeze and whispered “I love you” in her ear. Gia took a few steps forward and got right on the bus without so much as a glance back at us.
I know she was nervous about the first bus ride because she asked me a few times what to do when she got on. Kindergartners are required to sit in the front few rows and I think that made her feel better–she knew where to sit and didn’t have to walk up and down looking for a seat. Today she chose the third seat on the right and she slid in by the window. She looked out and I was waving like a wild woman but she didn’t really notice. She was busy talking to whoever was sitting down next to her.
After the bus pulled away, the other parents said goodbye, but I could barely talk. Tears sprang to my eyes almost immediately and I half jogged to our house and left my husband and Nicholas behind. It took quite the effort to not actually sob. I’m pretty sure my husband had a moment too.
Today was also my first day of classes at the college and I was thankful for something to do so I didn’t sit there and watch the clock all day. After my last class I raced out, hoping to make it home before Gia did. The bus was a little late today and I made it with plenty of time to spare.
Gia was so happy to see us and she sprinted over and gave me a big hug. She told me she had a great day and she loves her teacher. I also heard about eating lunch with her friend Matthew, the story and song about the turtle and the coloring she did in art class. She held my hand as we crossed the street back to our house and sweetly looked up at me and asked, “are there chocolate chip cookies?” And of course, there were.
It’s tradition, stemming way back to my childhood, to have warm, homemade chocolate chip cookies on the first day of school. We’re keeping up with that, for sure!