The weeks (and let's be honest here--months) leading up to Rowan's first day of kindergarten have been full of tears (for me) and excitement (for her). I wasn't necessarily sad about her actually going to school. I knew she'd have fun, meet new friends, love her teacher. I was more sad that it's the end of an era. The end of hanging out with the kids all day. The end of knowing, for the most part, exactly what my child did during the day. The end of innocence, so to speak. Not that she'll come home from kindergarten knowing about everything bad in the world. But that, when sitting with her friends at lunch and playing on the playground, she'll learn about things. Things like crushes, naughty words, Justin Bieber.
Luckily I had Lance to remind me that I loved school. That I loved (and still love) learning. And that Rowan is so much like me. So when the fateful day came, I was surprisingly dry-eyed. I felt tears coming a few times, but I held it together. I drove her to school and took her to her classroom. The parents all stayed for a while to see how the classroom was set up, where the lockers were, etc. Rowan's teacher clearly missed the whole "check the gender" box on the kindergarten registration form because all of her nametags were blue (while the other girls had red) and she had a bat on her nametag which she just couldn't get over. After she asked me approximately 100 times about why there is a bat flying on her nametag, I embarrassingly had to ask the teacher if there was any way she could get a different animal on her nametag (as the other girls had butterflies and ladybugs). Ridiculous. But when I left, she was excited as could be. She blew me a kiss and went to play.
And, just as I thought she would, she loved school. She loved the bus, she made new friends. It was a long day and she even missed me a tiny bit. I think the all day, every other day schedule will be perfect for us. Still some lazy days mixed in there, but plenty of time for fun at school, too.