All Akimbo: It’s the big day!

By Kim Blakely, Mojo’s freaked Zen mama

Well, Mojo, the day has arrived. In just a little while we’ll be heading out for your first day of preschool.

You’re only going to be there three hours at a time, two times a week, admittedly not very long. But, the thing is, it’s such a big milestone – maybe the biggest one to date in some ways.

I’m sad beyond reason that it’s not going to be just you and me doing our thing every morning from now on.

You’re growing up way too fast, little man.

For the record, for months now I’ve asked you to please slow this whole thing down, but you’ve just smiled and asked for more broccoli/spinach/salad/carrots – seriously – in hopes that you can get bigger right before my eyes. You’ll take a bite and demand, “How big am I now?!” Breaks my heart and makes me giggle all in the same nanosecond.

Anyway, I’m worried that I won’t be able to make my feet move if you cry when I drop you off at school today. How will I leave you with people you don’t know if you’re begging me not to? I know you’ll have a great time if you’ll just give it a chance, but you’re such a shy, sensitive creature … getting there will be half the battle, I know, and I’ve been pretty firm with myself about not backing down because you don’t want to stay right away, but now’s the moment of truth – can we do it? Or will I cave and whisk you away with a promise that you can stay home with me until you’re 40?

I guess we’ll know the answer in just a bit.

We did meet your new teacher for the first time last week, and we’ve visited your classroom – and the one next to it – several times, too. You even got to play with a little boy who will be in your class for a few minutes while we were there.

I think you’re looking forward to playing with the toy kitchen and the pretend food and with the plastic tub of dinosaurs, monsters and jungle animals. You’re going to do music and art and creative movement and you’re going to play on one of those school playgrounds that you’ve been eyeing for as long as you can remember.

We’ve talked about how very much fun you’re going to have in school, and we’ve played a game about my not wanting you to enjoy it for a minute. You tease back, telling me you will SO have fun, and then, to keep the game going, you instruct me to say, “I don’t want you to smile!”

But, oh, sweet boy, I do. I want you to smile. I want your life to be filled to the brim with love and laughter.

I so want to be there protecting you from anything that might scare or hurt you, even though I know that won’t help you one speck in the long run. You’ve got to just get out there and live it up.

You’re most capable of speaking up for yourself. You already know how to approach kids, introduce yourself and ask their names, and if you can bear to ask them at a volume just a little above your bashful whisper you usually get a hearty introduction.

I want you to have friends – and I want you to have fun. I want everyone in that preschool to get to know you for the funny, cool, amazing kid you are.

Still, this is your first step “away” from me, and while I’m excited about all the new things you’re going to learn and experience, a part of me wishes things could just stay the same forever and always.

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