I was looking through the draft folder for my blog and stumbled upon this piece. It was written when I was pregnant with Lucas and Elise was still in pre-school. Not sure why I never published it, so today, I thought I would.
The mother kneels down on one knee and rests her forehead against her daughter's. Clasping the little girl's face in her hands, she wishes her a good day, and tells her to have fun. An admonishment of "be good!" is not needed for this child. Kisses are exchanged and the little girl runs into her classroom; the all-too-familiar burgundy and black bag slung over her shoulder. There is no final glance back at her mother as she has already spied her friends and envelopes them in a good morning hug.
Comically struggling to her feet, the mother walks down the hallway to where her son is waiting eagerly outside his classroom door. She repeats her good-bye ritual with the little boy and as soon as he is able to, he runs into his classroom yelling, "heyyo eveybahyey!" in his toddler brogue. He seems to have forgotten his mother was ever there.
She now walks back down the hallway, which is adorned with brightly coloured children's drawings of all skill levels, and she spares one final look into her daughter's classroom. The girl is studiously bent over a piece of paper, tongue slightly sticking out as she brings to life the latest creation that has been swirling around her imagination. The morning sun streaming through the window gives light to the many hues of her brown hair and in that moment she is breath-taking.
Smiling and exchanging greetings with the other parents, the mother heads for her car. As she gets in, she closes her tired eyes and allows herself to have a quiet moment before starting the car and driving off for her 2 hours and 45 minutes of freedom. She is alone. Except for the tiny life that is growing inside of her.
While she is amused at her children's independence, she can't help but feel a little melancholy. But she reassures herself it just means she's doing something right.
It has been a long road of letting go for this mother. Her mind wanders back to the days following the little girl's diagnosis with diabetes when she was just a baby. Never would she have believed they would make it to this point; the mother can remember laughing at the idea of ever letting her child out of her sight for even a minute, let alone 3 hours.
She thinks back to the first days of leaving her child in the care of another. The anxious thoughts. The "what-ifs?" Her racing heart every time the cell phone rang. And how when her child was with her, she almost never knew where that cell phone was. But on school days, it almost never left her hand out of fear that she might be needed.
How far she had come... both of them! The mother knows that it is just one stepping stone down a long pathway of firsts, but for once in her life she feels ready. And that she can handle it.
Sighing, she starts her car, and turns out of the parking lot and onto the road. As the school disappears in her rear view mirror, the mother whispers one last prayer for her children, then turns her eyes to the sun-splashed road ahead.
6 days ago