It's the last night before your eldest becomes a kindergartener. Let me guess, you're thinking back to when you found out you were having a baby. If you're the mom you may be thinking about the first time you felt your baby kick. As a dad you're might be thinking about the amazing transformation your wife was taking right before your eyes. As parents you're thinking of "go time", the wait and agony of labor, and the glee you felt when you first met your precious babe. The first time you got to say their name directly to them. When you officially became a parent.
You're thinking of the first time they smiled at you, rolled over, walked and talked. The nights you spent holding their hand as they nodded off to sleep because the only thing they needed in the entire world was your presence.
And I'm sure you're thinking of the first real conversation you had with him/her. The one that made you go, "Damn. This kid is pretty neat!"
All night you'll be wondering if they're ready for the big school. Are they ready for a big classroom? New friends? Will they eat their lunch? Listen to their teacher? How will they know to get off the bus at the right stop?
And all night you'll be wondering if you are ready. If you can handle letting go of your sweet baby's chubby little fingers.
The truth is you are both 100% ready and both 100% not. It's a roller coaster of emotions that change throughout the day. It's fear and excitement. Joy and sadness. You are so proud of all you have both accomplished and terrified of the unknown.
So tonight, when you're feeling really emotional, sneak in to their room, rub your fingers through their hair, inhale their sweet smell, and hug them tight. For tonight you'll put to bed your precious baby and wake up to a kindergartener.
And if you need to, drive by their school throughout the day tomorrow to try and catch a glimpse of them. Most likely you'll see them running and smiling; enjoying their new friends and playground.
You did it!! You got your first born to elementary school. Give yourself a high five. Maybe even two!
And in exactly one year you'll high five yourself for making it through the summer without killing your first grader. :)