That was the note-to-self I gave myself at the beginning of this new school year.
On Monday my son Jiedyn started his first day of Grade 3. He was so excited and happy to see all of his friends and that soon his sister would be starting too. He settled in well and before I knew it he was pushing me out the door. His transition between grades 2 and 3 has been amazing and so simple. Nevaeh burst into tears as we left wanting her big brother. It was beautiful to see how close they had become over the school holidays, amongst their tiffs. Here are some photo's of his first day..
after school he came home beaming telling me all about his new responsibilities in Grade 3, who he now sat next to and what he did at recess and lunch time in the yard. He still has the same besties but they are all in separate classes this year so it will be interesting to see if he wiggles out of his comfort zone.
On Tuesday I walked to school with my little girl proudly skipping along beside me in her new school uniform. With her hair in pig tails she was so excited to be "a big school girl". Jie too was excited for her giving her encouragement and some tips on how to make friends and be kind.
It was a surreal moment for me seeing her so excited and so ready for school. She got up, had breakfast, got herself ready and packed her bag and we were now on our way to School.
At school we took Jie to his classroom first. We snapped these shots just outside his classroom before we said our good byes and good lucks..
Nevaeh had to wait an hour before she started. It was a long wait for my little Miss who was just so eager.. Out on the playground as we waited for 10am to come she made an effort to go up to two little girls in the playground and ask to play with them. They were rude and a little nasty to her and she turned and dropped her lip and walked towards me as tears filled her eyes. It was one of the most heartbreaking moments I'd felt in a long time. I didn't make a big deal of it. I comforted her and told her to go and play again. The little girls apologised after seeing that they made her upset and all was well in the world again. The played tiggy for a little while until Nevaeh tottled off to do her own thing. A little bit later she was confronted with 5 boisterous boys trying to stand over her for the cubby house but this time Nevaeh stood her ground saying "This cubby house is for everyone guys!!" For a moment I was proud of her but then one of the little boys screamed in her face to get out.. She stayed put, turned her back to them and they ran off. I called out to her and as she turned around she was again in tears. She walked slowly towards me and I comforted her again. I told her I was proud of her but nothing I could say made her feel okay again. "I hate school, nobody likes me. I want to go home" she moaned. We made our way to the classroom and she was all excited. She put her bag away, took off her jumper and put on her name tag. We played for a while and she looked so happy! Check her out..
That was until the bell went and I had to leave. At the door she gripped me as I went to say goodbye. She started getting all emotional and was soon crying begging me not to go. Her teacher held her and said that it was better for me to just go. I gave her one last kiss and with a heavy heart I walked away. I could hear her at the end of the corridor and I broke down. Tears filled my eyes but I kept walking. I hadn't seen her this way since her Dad left us two years ago. I had an anxiety attack and had to sit down at the Village shopping centre on the way home.
I was so glad that my besty had the day off that day. She works in childcare and was able to reassure me that it's okay and completely normal for her to act that way and for me to feel the way I did. I called the school just after 11am and asked about her. I was hurried off the phone with very little information as it was recess time and the kids/teachers were out of the room. I felt low all morning until just after 1pm I received a phone call from her teacher saying that she has settled and was playing with a friend just outside of her office. I could breath again and was able to relax a little knowing that she was okay.
Two days later and her second day of school was worst though. We got to school a half an hour early so that she could settle in a little bit before school started but after putting her bag in her classroom and playing for a little while Nevaeh grazed her knees while running around the play ground. And so she got introduced to sick bay by her big brother Jie who held her hand and sat with her. She relieved a band-aid and a sticker and was on her way to start her 2nd day of school. We were just about at the door of her classroom when she stopped in the corridor. "I don't want to go in there" she mumbled. I encouraged her as much as I could before a student-teacher came out to help. Still refusing another teacher came out but she just would not budge. Two more teachers came out including the Principal and I was again encouraged to leave them to it. I kissed her and told her I'd see her after school. She was held again by the teacher so that she wouldn't run after me but this time screamed "I hate school, I don't want to be here. I want to go home, I want my Mummy. Mummy.. Mama.." crying and pleading hysterically. The principal walked me out of the building as tears again fell down my cheeks. Every part of me just wanted to hold her but on I walked. It was so so hard.
My outgoing, bubbly, confident, chatty and smiley girl was an emotional mess pleading me to stay with her. Her cries stayed with me as I walked around Coles trying to remember what I needed to get. My phone rang around 15 minutes later and it was her teacher assuring me that she was fine and now playing beside her friend from Kinder. I was an emotional mess once again but she was very supportive and told me to expect this behaviour from now on. To prepare for it. After thanking her and hanging up I didn't know if I could. I said a silent prayer asking for strength and went about my day.
Friday was a massive milestone. We walked into the classroom. She put away her bag and grabbed her name tag. I helped her put it on and together we played with the play-doh until the bell went. She turned to me and said "Oh no, now you have to go.." I said "Yes, I have to go now, I'm meeting up with Sheena today." and got up to leave. She ran around the table and threw herself into my arms and pulled me down so she could kiss me. Then she walked over to a friend and I walked towards the door. I looked back and she yelled out with a beautiful smile on her face "Bye Mum! I hope you have a good day with Sheena today". We waved to each other and a tear fell down my cheek again. But this time because I was proud of her. My big school girl..