Tomorrow is my granddaughter’s first day of school. Kindergarten is a big step for a little girl. She’s a little scared. So are her mother and I. Megan is smart and adorable, but every parent and grandparent thinks that about their child…or at least they should.
We all remember school. Even the smart and popular kids must have had moments of doubt. For the rest of us, there was a constant worry about fitting in. None of us want to be the last one chosen for the team or the first one out in a spelling bee. But Megan knows nothing of that yet.
She is apprehensive but not really fearful. She’s shy, timid around new people and new places. She doesn’t know what we know about school. It can be a cruel place. As the adored oldest sister and first grandchild, she has little experience with competition. The center of attention is her birthright. So we worry that we haven’t prepared her for the cutthroat world of kindergarten.
Her wardrobe is ready and she’s got a brand new Hello Kitty backpack and a lunch pail. She will pack a lunch to school now. She’s always eaten meals with an adult. Will she be able to open the milk carton by herself? Have we prepared her for eating lunch alone?
On Saturday I took her to buy school shoes. Nana, Mommy and Megan, three generations bonding over shoe shopping. The pink Chuck Taylors were too big, but very cute. But, she doesn’t know how to tie shoes yet. It’s one more thing that we have neglected to prepare her for as she ventures out in the world.
I don’t remember being so anxiety ridden when my children first went to school. Perhaps because I now know how quickly they grow up, I am holding on to every moment of childhood with my granddaughter.
Parents and grandparents all over the world are struggling with these same feelings. What an amazing level of trust we place in teachers. All our hope for the future we hand over to teachers on the first day of school. Tomorrow morning she walks out her front door and enters the new world of kindergarten.
Nana is picking her up after school. I can’t wait to hear how it went. I will be a nervous wreck all day!