My mind reflected on how my mom prepared me for those moments when I wasn't with her, and I tried my best to impart those words of wisdom to my child. In the weeks leading up to the first day of school, I constantly found myself repeating,
"Lilly, make sure to make new friends."
"Be kind to people."
"Listen to your teacher and follow directions."
"You are special, and you are going to accomplish amazing things."
"Be careful and mindful of your surroundings."
"You're going to have so much fun!"
"Don't play around the bus."
"Don't let anyone touch your private parts, and don't you touch anyone's private parts, and if they do, you tell me. You won't get into any trouble."
"Lilly, I love you!"
And the list goes on and on and on!
When the big day arrived, I must admit it was a little rougher than I had expected. I cried. It was hard. She and I have been home with each other since February 2019. The thought of her being away from me in a new environment with new people was terrifying. How was I going to protect her? How would I console her when someone hurts her feelings? I wasn't going to be able to laugh with her when she heard something funny!
In order to teach her that change is good, that positive growth comes with change. I had to let go of my fears. As I released her hand, gave her a kiss and a hug, said my goodbyes, and watched her walk down the long hallway, I put her in God's hands and said a prayer for her, her classmates, teachers, and everyone she will come into contact with this school year.
We both survived the first day! I'm here to tell those of you who are experiencing the first day of school jitters...you will survive too!
I learned to trust that we're doing a pretty good job at raising a kind, thoughtful, happy, smart, beautiful, funny little girl. Lilly's first day of school reminded me that it's important to acknowledge my feelings and authentically feel them. I also learned with my emotions all over the place; I needed a DRINK! So that's precisely what we did...we drank our lunch!
What are some of your favorite back-to-school memories? Or what tell me about some of your favorite kid's back-to-school stories. I'd love to hear about them, so please leave a comment below.