Friday, August 24, 2012

Kindergarten, the Kiss, a Hermit Crab and a Falling-Apart Mom

**WARNING:   This blog will probably be disjointed and inconsistent.**

I'm gonna say it for the world to read.  I'm not good at this.  I'm just not. 

When my kids rip my heart out and run around with it, I just don't do well. 

Like Monday.  The day my precious baby, whom I feel as though I birthed yesterday, started Kindergarten. Took half my heart with him.  We held hands.  Walked into his little class, kissed and hugged goodbye.  I walked out and then not only fell apart once but 22 times as the day carried on. 

Some time later, I learned my daughter, who skips along with the other half of my heart hanging on the side of her sleeve, had been kissed at her preschool.  By a boy!  Granted, I adore the little boy like he is my own.  But she's my baby.  Not supposed to be kissed!  When I asked her about it, she simply smiled all sheepishly and covered her face with her hands.  "Where did he kiss you, sweet girl?" (mind you, she's 3!)  ... No answer.  Just pointed to her lips.  OY VEY.

It's time to let go a little.  That's what I'm not good at doing.  Not good at letting go of the little infant boy who never slept and constantly wanted mama to hold him.  Not good at letting go of the idea now that he is a little bit mine and a little bit the world's, starting his own life in school, making his own friends, finding his own way in this big bad society that is sometimes touchingly kind and other times immeasurably cruel.

I have to let go just a little bit of my baby girl who absolutely loves preschool more than she loves anything in the world.  She actually asks to go.  Smiles the minute she sees the little boy who kissed her for the first time and runs inside for circle time, doing exactly what she is supposed to do.

Oh booooo hoooooo.   That's what I did all week.  Until the hermit crab went missing.  How, on God's earth, you lose a caged hermit crab is beyond me.  But, indeed, we did.  I went from crying a river to laughing so hard I was crying a steady stream, as we got on hands and knees searching the house for a live (or possibly dead) crab in a shell.  We picked up two of them on our trip to the beach (see previous blog), gave 'em each a name, and brought 'em home.  Gretel was the one who disappeared.  Literally disappeared. We woke up, and she had gone missing.  The children swear up and down they never took her out.  She had vanished...

...Vanished.  Like the seemingly endless days and nights of swaddling my baby boy & girl, changing diapers, and complaining that I never got any sleep. Gone. The moments where each baby uttered their first 'raspberries,' then their first word, then their first sentence..

Then, this morning, we dropped off both children to school, walked inside to a weird-acting dog who was screeching and jumping about, and lo and behold - there she was!  Gretel.  Scratching her way across the dining room floor. She came back to us.

As did both babies when they returned home from school.  Just one more milestone.  One more rite of passage for each of them.  For me, too. 

Feeling a little disjointed... a little inconsistent.  Learning to let go just a little at a time... 

I'm not good at this... (I type, as a severe case of the fall-aparts sets in yet again)...

"While we try to teach our children all about life, our children teach us what life is all about."

Jackson in his Kindergarten class

Keene just before school starts
Gretel the Hermit Crab in her Hello Kitty shell


  1. Dawn love your blog. Let Ms. Gretal teach you a life lesson too. We as parents need to prepare our children (like the hermit with a SHELL) and sometimes we will laugh ourselves silly & at other times we cry more tears then Niagara Falls. Remember to teach them Proverbs 1: 10, My son if sinners entice thee, consent thou not.

  2. Totally adorable story. And so true for us moms. Hugs!


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