My Mom likes to say to me that having a baby is like a hitch in the army. I just love her World War II euphemisms. Her logic is that parenting is all consuming till a kid hits about first grade and the kids becomes way more independent.
My youngest, Aaron graduated Kindergarten today. He was so poised on the stage, suddenly such a big kid, and as I watched him I realized with bittersweet sadness my hitch was over. I waited many years to have a family not having Ryan till I was thirty eight years old, and Aaron at almost forty. I have always felt my baby rearing and parenting little ones was rushed by the loud ticking of my biological clock. I often have regrets having them so close together because the years they were little is one big mishmash punctuated with a double blur of tandem nursing, diapers, and preschool. I just now am catching up on TV shows and movies from that time via Netflix because as soon as a movie would come on from about 2003 till 2009, I would fall asleep.
All the kids won special awards. Aaron won the “Lover of Books” award. He read 580 books this year at home as part of his homework and was recognized for that feat. His teacher also said whenever Aaron was done with his work in class he would be quick to get a book and read. My husband and nephew came to the event, it was amazing to have extended family there taking pictures and just being there for support.
I was grateful for the help as I passed around a petition to voice our dissatisfaction with the principal for her decision to let a troubled teacher who first taught kindergarten unsuccessfully, then science, move to the first grade. From experience, I’ve learned first grade is as transformation a year as kindergarten. Unlike my mother, after my hitch in early childhood, I will not leave my kids to fend for themselves educationally. I will fight for them to have decent teachers. I will fight for what they need to learn.
I am so proud of my growing boy and what a cool kid he is growing to be. I am sure going to miss having a little one.