Autumn is officially in Kindergarten and Brody is in Preschool! I can't believe both my kiddos have reached this milestone and twice a week I have 3 blissful hours all to myself...
Leading up to the start of Kindergarten, Autumn was very excited. She was a bit nervous about certain aspects, like finding her class. We talked a lot about what she could expect. She chose the perfect "first day outfit" and everything was smooth sailing. I worried that she'd back out that morning, but she couldn't wait to walk out the door and down to the bus. When the bus did finally come, she didn't want to go. She didn't cry or throw a fit, but I could see the tears coming and the hesitation. I more or less pushed her on the bus, and hoped for the best! All day I worried, but I was so incredibly excited for this new transition for her and for our family. While Adam and I were out shopping, I bought a huge Hello Kitty balloon to take down to the bus stop with me to pick her up from her very first day.
Unfortunately, Autumn came off the bus in tears. There'd been a misunderstanding on the bus on the way home, and Autumn's feelings were hurt. All I wanted was for her to jump off the bus with a big smile, but that isn't what happened. It absolutely broke my heart that she broke down into sobs when she finally saw me and could reach me. We talked a lot about what had happened, trying to keep things positive. It was hard for me to know what exactly had happened on the first day, and if she'd enjoyed it otherwise, because for a 5 year old, all she could think about and remember was the poor way in which it ended.
We talked a lot about day 2. I promised that I would hold her hand and help her to be brave, and that I would talk to the bus driver about what had happened. My biggest concern was getting her back on that bus, and have her be willing to try again. That day before we opened the door to head down to the hill, she did her own last checks, "You'll talk to the bus driver? You'll come down with me?"
When the bus came, she willingly got back on and sat in the very front seat, right behind the driver. I told the driver what had happened, and while I didn't know what I was asking for, I just hoped she would look out for Autumn a little bit, since she was nervous. The driver couldn't have been nicer and I waved goodbye and hoped for the best.
Wanting to make sure Autumn was alright, and just in case the day was going badly, I wanted to surprise her. I took in a slurpee to her at lunch, just to offer her a sense of security to see me during the day if she needed it. As I waited for her class to come, she ended up walking right past me. I saw her and her new friends find their spot and she looked so happy - and confident.
When she got off the bus on day 2, the first thing she said to me was she LOVES art. She had so much more to tell me, and was so happy. It's been that way ever since, with her getting sad and upset when there is no more school for the week. Who knew the little girl that dragged her feet at preschool drop off each day the year before was a star student??
A few weeks later, Brody started his first day of Preschool. Everyday Autumn got to go on the bus, he cried, wanting to join her. He was so excited for school to start and to be a big boy. When the day finally came, he was so excited! He held my hand but walked right into class, happy as can be. He's always been so brave and so independent. He had a blast, and loves his class full of boys!