School started this week. Both kids were ready. The parents were ready. School supplies were purchased. New outfits meticulously chosen. Breakfast requests were received. Lunches were even made (GASP!) the night before!
We walked Jaia to her class and Wes to his. Jaia had friends run to the door in sheer delight that she had finally arrived. Any anxiety she had melted away.
Wes, on the other hand, was excited until he got to the door and until reality set in. He became a little clingy not wanting to leave our side just yet. He, like his mama, likes to take it slow and absorb his surroundings before diving in. He watched the others play “What time is it, Mr. Wolf” for a few minutes and then I got the hint (from the tough as nails teacher) that it was time for me to be on my way.
And then I lost it.
Thankfully, I was wearing sunglasses and sadly (but also the timing couldn’t have been better) a little boy took a tiny tumble and all the kids and the teacher ran to his rescue and I was free to slip away unnoticed. I went to the car and sobbed (and I mean SOBBED) for 10 minutes before I could actually drive again.
I truly thought that it would be easier with the last child than the first. It was not. For over 4 years, it has been mostly Wes and I, together, alone, every day while Jaia was at school. I suddenly realized that he would be spending most of his time with others and not with me anymore and I just felt sad.
Today was better. I still felt a little sad (watery eyes instead of sobs), but i watched as he walked right up to a little boy and started talking to him about his Lego shirt. Wesley will be fine. Great, even. I know he will. I knew he would yesterday, too. And maybe it is the knowing how he needs me a little less now that has made this transition harder than I expected.
Change is hard. But change is good. Since we can’t keep them little forever, we might as well celebrate the big moments along the way, even if we have tears in our eyes as we send them off into the world.