The time has finally come. Your child is gearing up for the first day of school and just like them, you have no idea what to expect. What if they don’t eat their lunch? What if they have an accident? What if they freak out? What if they just need you?
I know exactly how you feel.
The weeks leading up to your kid’s first day of school can feel like a countdown to the end of the world. You probably registered them earlier in the year, and went to the school’s open house. Maybe you spoke to a few teachers, maybe you toured a classroom or two.
Over the next few months, you probably talked to your child about what happens at school. Maybe you even played school at home to help with the transition any way you could. Maybe you practiced raising your hands to speak. Maybe you read a story to them, the way your teachers read to you. Maybe you and your child had a lot of fun playing school, having lunch time with their new lunch box, and singing the Alphabet song.
You talked to your child about recess time. Maybe you even went to the school playground for a pretend recess. Maybe you slid down the slide with your child, or pushed them on the swings. Maybe you played tag or hide and seek together. Maybe you had fun together.
You talked to your child about the new morning routine and how it will change. Maybe you practiced dropping your child off at school. Maybe you pretended to hug and kiss them goodbye. Or maybe you got a chance to take a practice ride on a school bus. Maybe you sang “Wheels on the Bus” together, and maybe your child made a new friend on the ride.
Now it’s only a few days away, and all you can think about is how they’re not the sweet, chubby, cuddly little bundle you played Peek-a-Boo with. The days of baby giggles and baby smiles, first steps and first words are coming to an end, and now you’re worried about how your child will handle this big new world at school.
But look back, Mommies and Daddies. Look back at all the wonderful and creative things you did for your child to make sure their first day of school is a special one. You were preparing yourself right along with them. You played through the preparation. You sang through the uncertainty. You showed your child that school is a wonderful part of growing up, and that the first day can be scary, but so exciting too. And while accidents will happen, lunches will go uneaten, and tantrums will be had, your child’s first day of school will be a great one, not because of the teacher, not because of the other students, but because of you.
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