My little turkey is in preschool.
This morning was a flurry of activity as breakfast was eaten earlier than usual, clothes picked the night before were put on, and the whole family headed out the door to take Roman to his first day of preschool. It was made extra-special by a daddy who chose to take the morning off work so we could all be there to watch him hang his little bag and find his name card. And the token photo holding the sign had to be done. And you know, I did alright!
I admit that I had a few moments of sad contemplation last night. I'm not sad he is growing- that excites me! As much as having babies brings me joy, the older they get the better! High schoolers are my favorite age, so the more independent they become, the more I enjoy life. For me, I feel joyful because we are moving! They are growing! And it's fun to watch! But last night I kept thinking about what a short time we have to mold these little people, before they have to fly on their own.
Yes, I know it's just preschool two days a week, and he is only 3. I'm not going to make it sound like a tragic "beginning-of-the-end" story like the first day of high school or something! But this is the first step. Now there are 6 hours a week where I'm not his teacher. Where he is spending it with someone else to correct him, cheer with him, equip him... And the hand-offs will continue growing.
That's what makes the first day of preschool hard. I feel the weight of the responsibility I have to raise him well increase. And in 2 years, I'll hand him off for 8 hours a day- when someone else will spend more waking hours with him than I do. And years after that, he'll go out and conquer the world or something! You see, it's the first step that has me observing with a solemn, understanding gaze.
So I take a small pause.
And then Liam and I high-five because we get to pal around like we never have, just mama and babe. And we shop. And we play. And we chum it up real nice. Because in only 3 short hours our comedy act returns to make the quiet spaces retreat once more.
And today, I was extra kinds of grateful for these two goobers. Because they are growing and they are joyful. And Roman is equipped well enough, at this point, to spread his wings and jump with smile, fearless and ready to take the next step however small it may be.
And that means I'm doing my job right.