Almost 5 years ago I was holding my first born baby, completely unaware of what lay ahead. Now he’s almost 5 and anticipating his first day of school. How did that happen?! Where did the time go? It’s like a sudden slap in the face how fast he’s growing up, and a conflicting sadness at the loss of my wee boy along with enormous pride and awe at the person he’s becoming.
Starting school kickstarts a whole new phase of our lives, completely changing routines and every day life. It’s actually a challenge to get my head around! Gone are picking and choosing work hours, all day child care at preschool, and not being defined by school holidays and terms! All those friendships he’s spent 4 years developing, gone, and the daunting task of creating new friends lies ahead.
Here are some of the other things we’re now experiencing or about to embark on!
- School visits – and the extreme organisation skills required to fit this around work, your other child, and life in general
- Buying school uniforms and the ridiculous sizing – having to buy an enormous size so they look like they’re getting lost in their clothes!
- Stationery – whoever decided it was a good idea to give a 5 year old a vivid?!
- Lunches – we’ve been lucky to have a preschool centre that provides all food; nutritious cooked meals every day. And now packed lunches? Uh! Cue hours spent trawling Pinterest for lunch ideas!
- And what about lunch boxes? With schools pushing for rubbish free lunches and having no rubbish bins available, you have to get creative! And yes I got sucked in to the Yumbox craze. Small compartments for lots of variety. And no rubbish! So I’m helping the environment, that justifies it right?
- School hours – don’t even get me started. Time to shuffle work hours again and accept the fact that part-time working mums have to take a backseat in the career department. At least for awhile anyway. And surprisingly I’m actually ok with that.
- School holidays – the mammoth scheduling effort this will require to avoid taking too much leave is mind boggling!
- Dealing with my own anxieties and hang ups about school – will he make friends, will he get bullied, will he be the 3rd wheel, will he be happy?
So preschool days are over and school days are about to begin. There are so many unknown and daunting times ahead, but also so many things to look forward to. Its time to take a step back, take a deep breath, let go, dive in, and hope his school days are happy ones. Hopefully I can take my own advice…