Here it is. I have dreaded this day since Annslee was born. I realize that this may sound crazy to some. But it is the truth.
I can’t tell you how many times over the last 5 years that I have thought or even said out loud…
“Man…the day this baby starts Kindergarten is the day you find me heavily medicated in a mental hospital somewhere.”
She has been my constant companion…toting older kids here and there…sharing quiet meals during the days…grocery store and target outings in jammies. I always had her.
The emotions of today were compounded because Chad and I went and decided to have children spaced to where our oldest son would start High School; our oldest daughter would embark upon her last year in Elementary School; Puddin cup would start Kindergarten while Chase had a relatively smooth transition from 6th to 7th grade. And if that wasn’t emotional enough…let’s go and adopt a 3 year old who will get to go to preschool. All of this added up to Mama, here, being a complete basket case. I held it together pretty well this morning.
And then I got home.
I found myself standing in my kitchen. Alone. And at that moment…Moon River began playing on my radio. I looked at my TV…where for almost 15 years…Sesame Street would have been showing. And it was just a black screen.
And just like that…I realized that my Sesame Street days were over.
And I vividly remembered the first day of school last year…when I sat watching with Annslee curled up in the crook of my arm…with her blanket and bunny and hair tossled from sweet sleep…thinking,
“Thank God I have a whole year with her!”
But time failed me again. And it moved faster than I was prepared for. And I missed her. And other memories came, unexpectedly, flooding in. Some memories I expected today. But then there are the ones that you don’t know are coming. They just sneak up on you that way…out of nowhere. And there’s absolutely nothing you can do to stop them.
There should have been a baby.
So…I missed him or her too.
And the tears that came where for more than just the kids in my arms. They were for the ones that weren’t.
And it hurt badly.
Last night we continued the tradition of gathering in the room of the Kindergartener and reading Twas The Night Before Kindergarten. Chase read Miss. Bindergarten Gets Ready For Kindergarten first. And I was fine.
And then it was my turn. I opened the front cover and saw the message that my parents wrote to Colton on the night before starting Kindergarten and that’s when it happened. Before I ever even got started…
I lost it.
And then sweet Chase lost it. He just kept saying through sniffles,
“I can’t believe Annslee is growing up so fast.”
I told them…
“The way y’all feel right now???? Well…that’s me. Times five.”
This was my favorite scene from this morning. They didn’t know I was watching. But I was. I was watching very closely to every move they made. I didn’t want to miss a thing.
I woke up at 4:30 this morning. For the life of me…I couldn’t go back to sleep. And this is why. It dawned on me that the chalk board that I have used for the first day of school since Colt’s Kindergarten year was under my bed with Christmas writing on it. “It’s fine,” I told myslef. “It’s not a big deal,” I reasoned. “Just use something else! Don’t clean the calk pen off that board because you are going to want to use that at Christmas time. That took you forever to do! Just leave it. Use. Something. Else.”
That conversation lasted until 4:48 when I dragged myself out of bed to look around the house for a black material that I could tape to the same chalk board so that I would not ruin tradition.
I turned the bathroom light on. That’s when I saw Chad’s head raised…with one eye all squinty like…saying,
“What are you doing????”
“Chad!!!! The chalk board has Christmas decorations on it and I can’t erase it so I have to find black poster board that I can write on with chalk! I know we had some but I think I threw it away when we re-did the floors. I’ve used the same chalk board since Colt was in Kindergarten! I have to use it today! Kroger is 24 hours. Do they have black card stock????? Do you think card stock would work??????”
“WHAT???????????????????? Are you crazy???”
“Um…YES! But you knew that when you married me.”
I was hunting all over the house for something that would work when he came out and said,
“Want me to go to Kroger?”
And just like that…
I fell in love with that man all over again.
Lucky for him…I found some felt left over from the felt board I made for Annslee’s home school preschool.
They picked out their own outfits. And might I say…
they did a marvelous job. Annslee was super hooked on this jean shirt. She has asked to wear it every day since we bought it.
Can we talk about how much I love converse? I pulled out my old black low-top chucks from college to show the kids. Those things were my jam.
We gathered as a family last night and prayed for them and this year. God…
…let their light shine! Let YOUR light SHINE!
I invited some friends over for breakfast…so my tears couldn’t stay long. The littlest cub is home and down for a nap…and we will leave to fetch the oldest in only 20 minutes. So…my heart is feeling full…and thankful…and amazed at what the Lord has done for us.
Oh. And I recorded Sesame Street.
We can watch it together any time we want now.