Birth order; It’s a funny old thing isn’t it? With your firstborn, you spend every moment noticing and documenting the first of everything. First smile, first word, first step, first day at the beach, first food, first day of school.
Our middle child, like many, has sailed through life somewhat under the radar. Tagging along with his big brother with some of his achievements documented but sadly, a few overlooked as life got busier with two kids, and then three, in tow.
Then there is the baby. I’ve spent a lot of time looking in the rear vision mirror of late because of mine. Reflecting on all the “lasts” with my littlest boy before he started school; Last day at daycare, last special days with grandparents whilst his brothers were at school, last swimming lesson and milkshakes in the peaceful bubble that was our standard Friday morning. I never wanted that time with him to end.
“It’s not the end, but the start of a whole new phase” friends told me. How could they say that when it was my baby starting school? Didn’t they understand? Looking back now, I was stuck. Really stuck. Stuck hanging on to all those lasts and fearing the day when my baby no longer wanted to hold my hand on the short walk to the school gates because, as the mama of two older boys, I know it all happens in the blink of an eye.
When the day came for his “Best Start Interview”, a brief meeting with the teacher prior to the official start of school, I cried. I made sure it was I was out of his sight and that it was big, heaving, ugly (UGLY) sobs so it was out of my system before we arrived at school. We couldn’t have the poor little tacker burdened with the label of the kid with the mum who “ugly cries” at the school gates, even before he started school.
When the official start day arrived, I whacked on my bravest face, faked a smile and off we went. Our baby has settled in nicely and is owning the whole school gig as he follows in his big brothers’ footsteps. He’s got this.
And guess what? Those friends were right. Now I have finally stopped clinging on and looking in the rear vision mirror, I can see all the beautiful moments that lay ahead for our little family. Even my baby. Yep, that’s him running off to school without me. And that’s OK.
Has your baby started school? How did you handle it?