I’d honestly avoided thinking about it, choosing to focus my energies on bathtime, cleaning up a bazillion Cheerios off the floor and making sure she gets to daycare on time. Somehow, it has crept up on me. My darling first-born is almost four years old and will be starting school in the fall.
I am conflicted about this, as I’m sure most parents are, however I doubt it’s for the same reasons. I remember primary school being… tough. I loved to learn. I loved being a part of a large group. And I hated being teased as much as I was. I was the awkward looking, anglo-speaking, arts-loving small fish in the big pond of franco-agro-sporty sharks. I didn’t fit in, until I found a place for myself. Or made a place for myself. Either way, I remember it being a tough journey. One that certainly made me a stronger person, but one that was filled with tears nonetheless.
If I don’t send my not-so-little one to school, I can shelter her from potential pain. But that’s dumb. I know it. And like the way I approach much of my life, things that are worth having are worth the potential risks.
So I went to Zellers today and bought her “back-to-school” supplies. Well, really, it should just be her straight “to-school” supplies. We’ll save the “back to” stuff for when she has a year under her belt. I painstakingly looked at each lunchbox, testing out zippers, thinking of capacity, wondering if they might leak. I looked at every single backpack, wondering if they were too big for her small shoulders, or if they had too many pockets, or not enough pockets. Through every ridiculously meticulous choice I was making, I realised that the excitement of picking out my own new gear as a kid came flooding back. I wasn’t just thinking about making the right financial/practical choice, I was 4 years old again, wanting the Barbie backpack.
I opted for the reasonably priced (and non-Dora-Disney-Princess-covered), cute purple plaid backpack (with too many pockets) and the matching purple and black insulated lunchbox. I also picked up a new pair white and pink running shoes and some headphones. Did you know that kids in kindergarten use computers these days? Sheesh!
Someone recently described DD-almost-four as bombastic. She does have that on her side. I wasn’t quite so exuberant at her age. She’s totally ready for this milestone.
I may not be ready, but that’s my problem not hers.
I also just remembered that purple was my favourite colour growing up. Come to think of it, it still is. I hope she likes it too.