(Note the wound on Elizabeth's face as a result of a stick that nearly gouged out her eye. Two days later and my heart is still pounding at what might have happened had it been an inch to the left. We didn't have sticks in California. Hopefully, the novelty wears off before I lose my voice from yelling, "STOP TOUCHING THE STICKS!" I'm sure the neighbors are wondering, "Then WHY did you buy a house in a FOREST?")
I drove them on their first day because with the 100 pounds worth of
(Which I now must wear everyday, seeing as I work in an office.)
But once I arrived in the parking lot, the Assistant Principal quickly shuffled the children out of my car - took the supplies from me - gave me a big smile, and said "goodbye!" as he quickly led the children in to the school. For a few long moments, I sat in the parking lot wondering what had just happened?
Am I sad because my babies are formally off to school?
Or am I happy because MY BABIES ARE FORMALLY OFF TO SCHOOL?
And YES, they are still and always will be my babies, but Good Lord, those children are feeling their oats and they need to be in a CLASSROOM.
With other children.
And an adult that isn't me.
Or my husband.
So then, as I pulled out of the parking lot, I might have driven to work while composing an Opera to the wondrous being that concocted the notion of school.
Last night, as I was tucking them in to bed, William said, "Mom, you know what? Today, we had this fun thing at school that they call "recess." And I really loved it." He paused and then added, "But then you know what I really didn't love? When I was right in the middle of PLAYING, the teacher blew this loud whistle that hurt my ears and she made us go BACK INSIDE and that was terrible. But you know what? I think I'd like school a whole lot more if I could just do that recess thing all the time and eat snacks. Because I like that, too. Mommy, all day the only thing I really want to do is eat and play."
That's my boy.
Today, we walked our children to the end of OUR NEW (!) street where we rendezvoused with the other neighborhood children, who were with their parents (clutching over sized coffee mugs), and their dogs, and within a matter of minutes, this GREAT BIG YELLOW BUS that would cart my little children away to the institution that is school appeared.
And I'll admit, there might have been a little knot in my throat and tear in my eye as crossing guards escorted my once three-pound preemies on to their bus...
But once they drove away and I caught sight of three little faces wearing the widest grins I've ever seen, Charlie and I turned around and happily skipped the whole way home.
In conclusion: every one of us ... except Henry who cried because he is too wittle to go on the "tool bus" absolutely and positively loves school.