"Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer.
Romans 12:12

Thursday, September 8, 2011

My Claire

I pray you have the strength to ask questions
That you have the heart to help others who need a hug
The courage to stand up for what you believe in
And the guidance to pick out good friends

Day three of kindergarten and I cried more today then ever. Maybe it's because today I am also meeting Emily's preschool and I am realizing how big both of my kids are getting. However, I think the fact that this is really happening, she is really in school now and won't get out until she is all grown is hitting me. Now the days will really zip by, if they haven't already zipped by fast enough. It's sinking in and becoming reality. I have a way of blocking my emotions in an event that usually causes tears (such as when I gave birth or got married) it just never seems real until after the fact and then it hits me... Hard. I am realizing this event is no different. Now that the chaos of the first day of school is gone, my head is clearing and focusing on my little girl growing up.

I wait in the car drop off line- ok, we're up! Claire gets out "Gimme a kiss,Claire!" I yell out in a panicky voice as she is starting to get out of the car- I can't miss a kiss this morning! I get my kiss and look at her as she looks so small in front of this huge school, surrounded by a ton of kids going where they need to go. A voice in my head shouts, "She's too little! She's not ready!"
"Of course she is ready, just look at her." The calm and cool person inside of me tells the crazed, panicked side.

"just ask a teacher for help, if you don't know where to go!" I shout out the door before I drive off. That is the hardest part of my day;driving away. I wonder is she too scared to ask for help like I was as a kid? Is she just walking around the giant school, feeling overwhelmed and lost? Did she make it to class on time?

I hate that part. But I look at her face and see it in her eyes: I see the uncertainty for sure, I see a little bit of fear, but what I see overriding all of that is her courage. I see this proud, excited little girl standing in front of the school, not really sure what to do but not really letting that unknown bother her either. I see a strong little girl.

"She is her father's daughter!" I think to myself and I know she'll be just fine. That's when the tears start. So many feelings at once: relief to know she will be just fine, pride because I see such a brave person in the form of a kindergartener. And then my own sadness of realizing that this time has come to an end. She is in school now. I was with her for five years and now I have to loosen my grip- just a little.

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