Today was the Boy's first official day of preschool. Or, "poo-school", as the Boy calls it. Nothing I can do to get him to say word properly. Not sure I want to anyways, it's too amusing.
The daycare has been transitioning him from the toddler room for the past couple weeks, and he has been surprisingly resistant. Or, perhaps, not surprisingly. The Boy has never been overly fond of change. But the preschool room is just upstairs from the toddler room. Almost all of the friends that he was used to playing with have gone upstairs already, and downstairs he was surrounded by a gaggle of new faces, cheeks wet with tears from fresh separations. He looked like a giant among beanstalks. A big fish in a pond full of minnows. It was time. But I guess the trip upstairs can seem daunting to a boy who is still little in so many ways. He wanted to stay downstairs where it was safe. As much as I was looking forward to the move, I kind of wish he could stay downstairs too.
This morning I carried his not-so-little body up the two flights of stairs, negotiated two sturdy gates, while simultaneously carrying his little tub of extra clothing and his dinosaur sippy cup. We had to find his new, as yet unmarked, cubby. We had to find his new routine. There is no special place for personal sippy cups upstairs, so I had to shove it in his cubby where it remained unused, unwanted throughout the day. I felt like it was my first day of school, and I didn't know where to go, what to do, how to act. I said goodbye and told him I would be back as soon as work was done, but I left feeling like I'd forgotten something important.
I'd forgotten the wild and rocky path that led to this moment. The sleepless nights, the crying, the earaches. I'd forgotten the sleepy sighs, the belly laughs, the kooky smiles. Instead of seeing someone I knew every inch of, I saw a stranger. A little Boy turned suddenly big. I've been there, but where have I been? Who was this little man calmly taking in his new surroundings? He's my little Boy, finding his way in a big, wide world. May it go slowly, and may I never miss a second of it.