This morning I was chatting with a friend about our first born kids and their entry into the new world of full-day school. Yes, Cooper did that last year, but her daughter just started this year at the same school. We were commenting on how rough that adjustment is for their little bodies and hearts. It’s not a bad thing; it’s just a “growing up” thing. Our children learn so much as they venture into a world where we are not physically present for a long period of time. Their little bodies are so tired, their little brains are worked out, their attitudes are stretched thin because of the energy they’ve exerted for the day, their tummies are hungry and they are full, full, full of wiggles.
I still feel like a “newbie” in the world of kids in school. I’m learning so much about what to expect, when to speak and when to remain silent, when to wait and when to act, when to say yes and when to say no (and maybe when to head for the hills!). We’ve already learned that sleep and food are essential. Laugh if you want to but really, it’s like the same information that was so enlightening to us when we had him as a baby is still enlightening us: give him plenty of sleep, maybe even more than usual and feed that tummy with good things that last.
Even as I learn how to help my child adjust to a taste of life outside our home and outside our family, I find that I too am going to school in a sense. How much do I say yes to? How busy do I allow and encourage or discourage our family to be? Do I err on the side of more? Do I err on the side of less?
It is especially challenging when my personality and personal bent is not necessarily matching up with my children’s. In fact, I often feel like I’m ready for more just when he is ready for less and vice versa. I’m trying to pay attention, I’m still learning how to have “eyes to see and ears to hear” even in this. And there is so, so much for me to learn.
For now I know that organization and planning are important. That’s lesson one; check. Lesson two is probably “sign up early”. I’m still working on that one; no check.
I sure hope that by the time Cecelia is ready to join the ranks of her elder siblings that I’ll feel a little more confidant. I should know that road and those ropes by then, right?