Monday, August 19, 2013

And Then My Baby Disappeared

Today, for the very first time, I slipped off a little girl’s silky pink pajamas and let them fall to the floor. I helped her put on her school uniform and marveled at the kid standing before me. And even as I watched her grow right before my eyes, I didn’t cry.

I watched as she stood in front of the mirror, whispering, “I am brave, I am smart, I can do this.” And I did not cry.

I saw her strap her shoes (on the right feet!) and gather her supplies, watched her as she confidently strode to the door and I did not cry.

I did not cry today as the Supergirl started Kindergarten. I did not cry when we walked into the classroom, even as I witnessed mothers breaking down in the hallway. Or other children clinging to their mommas as mine skipped her way down the hall into unknown territory. I did not cry when I thought about all of the other milestones that we had traversed thus far. I did not cry when I saw her sit down and make a new friend, or even when I drove away.

Even though I knew that I would, I did not cry.

I am excited for her. Excited for new friendships, new experiences, for this journey to begin. I am excited about the tooth that is getting a little looser every day. I am not sad that that my baby is nearly gone, almost unrecognizable from the bundle that I brought home nearly six years ago. I am excited that the person that I have nurtured is finally emerging.

And this afternoon, as we were pulling away from the school, as she was stumbling over her words in an effort to get out all of the details before she forgot them, like the names of her new best friends, she exclaimed, "I am awesome, my teacher thinks so too. See this sticker? See what it says? I am awesome. Also, I am the President of Kindergarten." 

And my heart sings with pride. 

 There will be days ahead, where I know there will be tears, when her heart will be broken by boys (and girls), when her hopes are diminished and her confidence is dashed, but today? Today is not the day to cry.

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